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Course Snapshot

As our country continues to grapple with double standards and systemic racism since its inception, we recognize the pain that the Chauvin trial can cause. Join us for a safe space for healing with

There is a Yoruba proverb that says: “One cannot teach a cut to heal, one can only create the conditions for the healing to take place.” For those of us who work to reduce disparities in the lives of minority and low-income families, creating environments that facilitate healing requires that we commit to social justice, remove the barriers of systemic racism, and wake up to the ways in which we personally use and abuse power in our everyday work and lives.

From the deaths of Philando Castille, Jamar Clark, Justine Damond, and George Floyd, to experiencing the ravaging blows surrounding the over 490,000 Minnesotans who have contracted COVID19 with over 6,556 people having died from the disease, the desire to create healing spaces, puts an enormous burden on providers, who themselves, may be experiencing vicarious trauma and compassion fatigue due to their daily exposure to clients who may be traumatized, emotionally wounded and depleted.  

Finally, despite their lived experiences of complex traumatic conditions (such as enduring systemic racism, incarceration, child protection cases, out of home placements, inadequate legal advice, abuses of power, addictions, blatant discrimination, community violence and hate crimes), this workshop will highlight the remarkable resilience of our clients, families and communities when culturally-congruent, strength-based, trauma-informed approaches are used to impact their minds, bodies and spirits.

Course Objectives

  • Participants will be introduced to the Models of Abused and Shared Power as ways to identify how systemic power is used.
  • Participants will learn the terminology and symptoms associated with provider over-exposure to client/community trauma (such as burn-out, compassion fatigue, secondary stress, and vicarious trauma).
  • Participants will learn culturally specific, trauma-informed treatment strategies that engage the mind, body, and spirit to generate healing environments for the clients they serve.
  • Using experiential exercises as well as small and large group discussions, participants will leave this workshop with mission statements that affirm their personal/professional commitments to healing themselves and others.

About the Presenter

Calling psychologist Dr. BraVada Garrett-Akinsanya prominently understates the case. Her name, starting with the title denoting her Ph.D., is followed by a small alphabet. As well, among her vast accomplishments, she founded and is executive director of African American Child Wellness Institute, a children’s mental health agency dedicated to the research, delivery and coordination of comprehensive wellness strategies for children of African descent.

Garrett-Akinsanya also serves as the president of Brakins Consulting and Psychological Services, which has the mission of “providing excellent, culturally competent mental health and consultation services that meet the needs of children, adults, families and organizations. “After all, a mere partial listing of her credits includes president of the Minnesota Psychological Association, which under her leadership garnered the American Psychological Association’s Diversity Leadership Award and the first board-certified psychologist in Minnesota to be named a Fellow/Diplomat in African Centered/Black Psychology by the National Association of Black Psychologists.

She is also published, among other titles, “Stress Management” in The Women’s Handbook on Mental Health (Beacon Press), “The Sociocultural Abuse of Power” in The Psychology of Prejudice and Discrimination (Praeger Press, Inc.), and “Making Spaces for Ourselves” in Women and Leadership: Transforming Visions and Diverse Voices (Blackwell Publishing).


Minnesota CarePartner/Roots Recovery is now Roots Wellness Center