HCN News & Notes

River Valley Counseling Center to Offer Program on Adverse Childhood Experiences, Trauma

HOLYOKE — River Valley Counseling Center, in conjunction with Valley Health Systems, will host “The Healing Project: Healing Hearts of Childhood Trauma” on Friday, Oct. 25. The program will educate participants on recognizing and understanding adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), the lifelong impact of trauma, and how people can work together to become a trauma-informed community. 

“The Healing Project” will define and recognize symptoms of trauma, explore techniques to address trauma, increase trauma-informed practices in the community and schools, and build skills and a common language for a more resilient community.

This program will take place at the Log Cabin from 8:15 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The cost is $50, which includes a screening of the resilience movie “Normalizing Trauma,” a keynote presentation by Laura Porter, lunch, and a breakout session. CEU credit will be provided to licensed mental-health counselors and social-worker professionals.

Porter, a national expert and co-founder of ACE Interface, LLC, helps to develop and disseminate educational products and empowerment strategies that help leaders throughout the nation dramatically improve population health. She helps integrate powerful findings from the landmark Adverse Childhood Experiences Study into prevention planning, practice, and evaluation.

“River Valley Counseling Center is proud to be bringing our community together to address adverse childhood experiences and trauma, and to be a catalyst for creating a trauma-informed community,” said Rosemarie Ansel, executive director of River Valley Counseling Center. 

“The Healing Project” is ideal for mental-health professionals, social workers, teachers and school administrators, police and other first responders, probation officers, courthouse staff, faith-community leaders, social-service providers, and anyone interested in working to create a trauma-informed community.

This program also addresses the important findings of the Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) conducted by Holyoke Medical Center between April and July 2019. Kathleen Anderson, the hospital’s director of Community Benefit, explained that the CHNA included opinions of the health needs of the community from local residents, city and state officials, local leaders, and community-based organizations, in addition to data gathered at the local, state, and federal levels. 

To register, visit www.holyokehealth.com/healing or call River Valley Counseling Center at (413) 540-1160.