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Mon, Jul 10


Online Event

Indigenous Perspective: Caregiver Vicarious Trauma Healing and Prevention

Nima Novak

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Indigenous Perspective: Caregiver Vicarious Trauma Healing and Prevention
Indigenous Perspective: Caregiver Vicarious Trauma Healing and Prevention

Time & Location

Jul 10, 2023, 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM PDT

Online Event

About the Event

Nima Novak

Training Description

The effects of vicarious trauma have been shown in research to cause very harmful consequences to those experiencing them. In this 2-hour training, the presentation will include: definitions; research on how polyvagal theory can help prevent vicarious trauma; an introduction to the neuroscience of nervous system and brain chemicals; and strategies caregivers of system involved youth (who are all too often negatively affected by vicarious trauma) can implement. Participants will be guided through a sequence of learning activities to explore and understand the negative impact that vicarious trauma can have on system involved youth and families and to gain increased awareness in order to reduce harm in the future through nervous system regulation and self-examination of their own behavior. Learning activities will include: self-reflection, storytelling of real life examples, large group exercises, and participant question time.

Learning Objectives

● Participants will be able to identify & explain 2 major nervous systems and functions

● Participants will be able to explain the window of tolerance and acquire 10 ways to identify dysregulation and its potential impact on system involved youth and their caregivers.

● Participants will be able to explain polyvagal theory and acquire 4 strategies for nervous system regulation which can be used by caregivers of system involved youth.


10:00-10:20am Welcome, Introductions, and Expectations

10:20-10:30am Resourcing the body activity

10:30-11:00am Definitions & functions:

● Parasympathetic Nervous System

● Sympathetic Nervous System

● Window of Tolerance

● Interoception

11-11:20am Breakout Rooms & Group Share

11:20am-12pm Definitions & Functions:

● Brain Chemicals

● Vagus Nerve & practical exercises to reset nervous system

12-12:20pm Break out Room & Group Share

12:20-12:40pm  Putting it all together & how to schedule

12:40-1:00pm Questions & key takeaways & wrap-up

Meet Our Trainer

Nima Novak is an Indigenous Speech Language Pathologist from the Mohawk Tribe of the Iroquois Nation. She holds a Bachelor's of Arts in Psychology and a Master’s of Science in Speech Language Pathology. She has worked extensively in marginalized communities, specifically in Oxnard with Indigenous preschool population and on the west side of Chicago, where she has seen first hand the negative effects of trauma on speech, language and fluency development. She is currently studying somatic therapies, Polyvagal Theory, Mindful Self Compassion (MSC) and Reiki to promote healing across the communities she serves, with the intention of loving kindness for all. Her focus on evidence-based practices and empirical research serves to bridge the worlds of healing and science which are often relegated to different categories. Nima’s holistic approach of resilience and education teaches how research-based mindfulness practices can be used to manage trauma in the body for both her students and colleagues experiencing the effects of secondary trauma. She is dedicated to empowering her students and all womxn to pursue their passions through the cultivation of resilience and self-worth. In her school based speech therapy and basketball coaching Nima takes a trauma-informed approach to support BIPOC and all students at every level.

Nima is an advisor on Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Connection Team Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Advisory Board and mentor's current students at California State San Marcos in the Students of Speech & Language, Inclusion, Diversity, & Equity Group. For her anti-racism work, she has been featured in Vice Magazine,, The Community Psychologist Special Feature, Authority Magazine and Thrive Global Magazine. She is a contributing founder and author of the anti-racism work group Living in Empathy. Nima has been featured in interviews on Evergreen State College, Educators for Justice IG live, SLPs Of Color IG live, the SLPs of Color podcast, the FAACT podcast and the Breaking Down Podcast. She has presented as a keynote speaker for The Rainbow Project, LGBT Chamber of Commerce of Illinois, Chicago Minds, Women Trans Femme Bike Group, Bradley Street Bicycle Co-op, University of St. Augustine Health Sciences, Community Living Thunder Bay, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and Northwestern University.

This course meets the qualifications for (3) BBS CE hours for LCSWs, LMFTs, LPCCs, and LEPs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences & is provided by Fred Finch Youth Center, CAMFT Provider #045295.

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