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Fri, Aug 06


Online Event

Understanding Body Size Myths & Fatphobia for System Involved Youth

Kelsey Pacha

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Understanding Body Size Myths & Fatphobia for System Involved Youth
Understanding Body Size Myths & Fatphobia for System Involved Youth

Time & Location

Aug 06, 2021, 9:30 AM – 2:30 PM

Online Event

About the Event

Kelsey Pacha

Training Description

This training supports those who support system involved youth in building awareness around their biases related to body size, becoming familiar with research on weight and health among youth and the connection between Body Mass Index (BMI) and its use in health care, as well as its relationship to white supremacy and systemic discrimination. We will explore how body size-base microaggressions can impact rapport and access to appropriate resources for system involved youth, explore the Health at Any Size model, discuss best practices, and apply our learning through roleplay.

This training is not about diagnosing eating disorders. Rather, it is focused on helping training participants identify their own biases and negative internalized beliefs about body size and health. By identifying what myths we’ve internalized, we can better support system involved youth and their families as more good data emerges about body size and health.

Learning Objective

  • Define foundational terms related to body size and fatphobia.
  • Take Harvard Implicit Association Test (IAT) on body size.
  • Analyze research on body size, weight, and their respective relationships to overall health, specifically in children and adolescents.
  • Explore the history of Body Mass Index (BMI) and its use in health care, as well as its relationship to white supremacy and systemic discrimination which may disproportionately impact system involved youth.
  • Become familiar with Healthy at Any Size (HAES) principles and identify how to apply this framework to system involved youth.
  • Explore best practices to support overall health and well-being for system involved youth.
  • Apply learning to roleplay re: navigating harmful body-based messages to children.


9:30am-9:40am Introductions: name, gender pronoun, one thing you wish to learn. Objectives,  scope, agenda.

9:40am-9:50am Self-reflection: When have you been aware of your body size? Have you gotten messages (advice, admonishment) from loved ones, community, or providers about your body size?

9:50am-10:20am Context and video. Basic definitions: body size, fatphobia, overweight.

10:20am-10:35am True/false activity re: research/relationship between body size and various aspects of health.

10:35am-10:50am Break (CEUs will not be issued for this time)

10:50-11:20am Research: what do we know about the relationship between body size and various aspects of health? How does this differ for youth versus adults?

11:20am-11:40am Review evidence of body size bias and impact on individuals, especially system involved youth. Review how to take Harvard IAT on body size.

11:40am-12:20pm Lunch Break (CEUs will not be issued for this time)

12:20pm-12:40pm Take Harvard IAT on body size & Debrief IAT

12:40pm-1:10pm Define microaggressions & explore intersections between fatphobia and other oppressive dynamics, i.e. racism & misogyny. Systemic impact of fatphobia, i.e. in media. Video examples & discussion.

1:10pm-2:15pm Define Health at Any Size principles, best practices, resources. Roleplay before lunch? Re: how to intervene interpersonally with adult & child?

2:15pm-2:30pm Questions & Answers & Evaluations

Meet Our Trainer

Kelsey Pacha, MA, M.Div. is a transman who has worked with marginalized communities for 15+ years in a variety of settings. He holds a Master of Religion and Psychology, Master of Divinity, and Certificate of Sexuality and Religion from Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, CA. He also holds a Bachelor of Science in Human Development and Psychological Services from Northwestern University in Evanston, IL. He is the owner of Kelsey Pacha Consulting, which supports the work of institutions and individuals in increasing their capacity for cultural humility and social justice-informed institutional change. Kelsey offers educational trainings and LGBTQ workplace policy expertise with an emphasis on practical skills, identity awareness, and personal empowerment. He regularly works with corporate diversity, equity, and inclusion officers and LGBTQ affinity groups, as well as legal, clinical, medical, and direct service (including child welfare and faith leader) personnel. He presents workshops around the country on the impact of inclusive spaces for LGBTQ people in various settings. Kelsey straddles the worlds of academia/theory and practice, serving as the Board President of Trans Bodies, Trans Selves, a national non-profit organization that publishes a 649-page resource guide of the same name, by and for the trans*, genderqueer, and gender-nonconforming communities. For more information, visit or contact Kelsey at

This course meets the qualifications for (4.25) BBS CEUs 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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