Restoring Community

2017 Summer Symposium

July 17-19, 2017
Hotel Bethlehem
437 Main Street, Bethlehem, PA 18018 United States


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Event details

Trauma, especially in childhood, is now acknowledged as a major predictor of future mental illness. Sadly, the effects of trauma impact many of the individuals that we as social workers, educators, counselors, probation officers and other restorative practitioners work with on a daily basis. The IIRP’s 2017 Summer Symposium, “A Restorative Journey: Transforming Relational Harm,” will explore the perspectives and tools of Trauma-Informed Care (TIC).

Led by Frida Rundell, Ph.D., IIRP associate professor and educational psychologist with over 30 years of experience working with at-risk youth and families, the symposium will provide a blend of theory, academic research and practical knowledge for developing healthy habits, pathways to healing and self-care.

This symposium is for counselors, social workers, educators and other practitioners engaged in working with children and youth, family and communities requiring trauma informed responses. The Symposium may be applied toward graduate course credit.

Meet Our Presenters

Frida Rundell, Ph.D.
fridarundellDr. Frida Rundell is a founding faculty member of the IIRP since 2006. She came to the USA with a wealth of experience in teaching, working in communities at risk and clinical practice. She promotes social and personal awareness of human understanding between people. She is committed to cultivating the next generation of social service professional with hands-on learning experiences to empower families in reaching their potential. Her work in multi-cultural settings in South Africa ranged from children and youth inflicted with HIV and AIDS, to the vulnerability of child-headed households vulnerable in their environment, to children with learning problems. As an educational psychologist and community worker, the theory and practice from her doctoral and master’s programs in community and educational psychology provide a broad base to correlate innovative programs and processes with best practices.

Forty-five years of experience in teaching, learning difficulties, assessment, evaluation and quantitative and qualitative research enrich her understanding of restorative practices. She inspires conversations and encourage social mindfulness with her compassionate witnessing processes. As social constructivist, she provides learners with insight through personal experience and in-depth understanding of developmental psychology, cross-cultural issues, psychology, trauma work and motivational facilitation. A narrative practitioner at heart, she believes that all voices have the right to be heard.

Kaethe Weingarten, Ph.D.
KaetheWeingarten smDr. Kaethe Weingarten, founder and director of The Witnessing Project, received her Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1974. She has taught at Wellesley College (1975-1979), Harvard Medical School (1981-), where she is currently an Associate Clinical Professor of Psychology in the Department of Psychiatry at Cambridge Health Alliance, and at the Family Institute of Cambridge (1982-2009). She founded and directed the Program in Families, Trauma and Resilience at the Family Institute of Cambridge. Internationally, she has taught in Africa, Australia, Canada, Europe and New Zealand, where she was a Fullbright Specialist.

She has given over 300 presentations and been a keynote speaker at numerous local, national and international conferences.  She serves on the editorial boards of five journals. In 2002 she was awarded the highest honor of the American Family Therapy Academy, the award for Distinguished Contribution to Family Theory and Practice.

She has written about her work in six books (which she has authored or edited) and over 100 articles, chapters and essays. Her most recent book, Common Shock: Witnessing Violence Every Day – How We Are Harmed, How We Can Heal, won the 2004 Nautilus Award for Social Change.

Dr. Weingarten’s work focuses on the development and dissemination of a witnessing model. One prong of the work is about the effects of witnessing violence in the context of domestic, inter-ethnic, racial, political and other forms of conflict. The other prong of the witnessing work is in the context of illness and disability. Her current research is on the role of grandmothers in the transmission of risk and resilience.

Dr. Weingarten has recently moved to Berkeley, California, where she is dancing and choreographing with a collaborator. They are applying the witnessing model to dance and movement performance in public spaces, such as cemeteries. She lives with her husband and spends time with her five grandchildren, who all live nearby.

Lyndra Bills, M.D., Psychiatrist
LyndraBills smLyndra J. Bills, M.D., is a board-certified psychiatrist who completed medical school at the University of Texas in San Antonio. She also completed a medicine/psychiatry residency and a one-year fellowship in post-traumatic stress at West Virginia University. Dr. Bills implemented the Sanctuary Model working in a West Virginia state hospital and then served as the Medical Director of the Sanctuary program at Friends Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She developed Trauma Art Narrative Therapy, a creative cognitive behavioral trauma resolution technique to help individuals process traumatic events.

Ellissa Collier
EllissaCollier smEllissa Collier is an artist, educator and advocate who has worked with Mural Arts Philadelphia since 2008. She has taught in multiple settings including juvenile detention centers, placement facilities and in foster care centers. Her work with young people involves exploring innovative artistic approaches to issues of self-empowerment, transformation and healing. In addition to receiving her Graduate Certificate in Restorative Practices from the IIRP, Ms. Collier also holds a Master of Fine Arts from Rutgers University and is a Trauma Certified Facilitator.

Lynette Reed, LCSW, MRPYC
LynetteReed smLynette Reed has over 25 years of experience working with children and families. She is currently working as a mental health clinician with adults and teens primarily in the healing of complex and developmental trauma. Lynette received her master's degrees from Marywood University School of Social Work and Administrative Studies and the IIRP. She has been focusing her practice in the healing therapies suggested in evidence-based practice and current neuroscience. Lynette is trained in EMDR and includes an attachment-centered approach to help clients find effective and secure strategies in their relationships. She has also found the use of animal-assisted therapy and other expressive therapies to help aid clients in their healing journey. Lynette conducts empowerment and psycho-educational groups and workshops for adults using techniques that restore calm and whole brain balance while learning strategies to renew and repair interpersonal and intrapersonal relationships.

Michele Snyder
Michele Snyder graduated from Shenandoah College and Conservatory of Music in April, 1985, with a Bachelor in Music Therapy. She became a registered music therapist when she completed an internship at Allentown State Hospital. The people that were in the state hospital had mental health/psychiatric issues, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression/anxiety, autism and Alzheimer disorders. In June, 2010, Michele graduated with a Master in Restorative Practices and Youth Counseling from the IIRP. She is very grateful and pleased with how her master's degree compliments her undergraduate degree. Michele says she values her years of experience in the human services and the power of music along with restorative practices for assisting with people to make positive changes in their lives.

Kameelah Rashad
KameelahRashad smKameelah Rashad is the Founder and President of Muslim Wellness Foundation (MWF), a nonprofit organization dedicated to reducing stigma associated with mental illness, addiction and trauma in the American Muslim community through dialogue, education and training. She serves as the Fellow for Spirituality, Wellness and Social Justice at the University of Pennsylvania (UPenn). In this capacity, Kameelah supports students in their exploration of faith-based activism, spirituality, emotional well-being and healing. Working in conjunction with the Chaplain’s Office, she collaborates with other cultural centers on campus to facilitate intersectional conversations on race, religion, identity, belonging and advocacy. Kameelah served three years as the Muslim Chaplain at UPenn and continues to facilitate discussions on religious identity development and challenges faced by American Muslim youth. She is also a resource to the wider Penn community and administration on Islam and Muslims.

In addition to Kameelah’s involvement in mental health advocacy and religious life, she is a proud social justice activist.

Kameelah graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a B.A. in Psychology and M.Ed. in Psychological Services. She has pursued further graduate education, completing a second Master in Restorative Practices & Youth Counseling from the International Institute for Restorative Practices and obtaining a post-master's certificate in Family Therapy from the Philadelphia Child & Family Therapy Training Center. Kameelah is a certified instructor in Adult, Higher Education & Youth Mental Health First Aid. She is pursuing her doctorate in Clinical Psychology at Chestnut Hill College in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Joanne Pritchard, M.A.
JoannePritchard smJoanne Pritchard serves as the Assistant Director of California Social Work Education Center (CalSWEC) In-Service Training at UC Berkeley. She has experience working in direct practice with children and families served by the public child welfare system. Additionally, Ms. Pritchard has worked on curriculum development and program implementation at the county, regional, and statewide level. She is dedicated to quality training for social workers in public child welfare and the use of teaming processes to improve outcomes for children and families.

Mary Jo Hebling
maryjoheblingMary Jo Hebling brings to the IIRP extensive hands-on experience in restorative practices in education. Her work has helped hundreds of schools across the U.S. — urban to rural — including those in Detroit, Philadelphia, Newark, N.J., and Baltimore — implement restorative practices to improve school climate.

Ms. Hebling also brings significant experience as a human services practitioner, delivering restorative services to youth and families. As a caseworker and counselor for Community Service Foundation — IIRP model programs — she provided family reunification support. She also trained foster parents and counselors who provided restorative services to families from across Pennsylvania.

Elizabeth Smull
elizabethsmullElizabeth Smull is a skilled restorative practitioner who has provided direct services to struggling youth and their families. A facilitator of Family Group Decision Making (FGDM), she brings extended families together to help them take responsibility to solve their own problems. She coauthored a book on FGDM, Family Power: Engaging and Collaborating with Families (2013). A Certified Drug and Alcohol Counselor, Ms. Smull has supported individuals involved in the juvenile and adult criminal justice systems. She is also an experienced facilitator of restorative conferences, which bring together significant stakeholders to express their issues and heal the harm in cases of crime and wrongdoing.

Ms. Smull worked within the IIRP model programs, Community Service Foundation and Buxmont Academy, for 15 years. During her time there she oversaw the Conferencing Program, which includes both FGDM and restorative conferences, and supervised counselors for at-risk youth.

Ms. Smull provides restorative practices professional development to a worldwide audience of educators, counselors and social workers and has worked with schools across the country to improve school climate. She is a frequent presenter on restorative practices and FGDM at numerous state, national and international conferences, including the National Association of Secondary School Principals, the National Conference on FGDM and Other Family Engagement Approaches and the International Bullying Prevention Association Conference. She received a Bachelor of Science in Education: Social Studies from Millersville University and a Master of Restorative Practices and Youth Counseling from the IIRP.

Twitter: @bethsmull_IIRP


Symposium participants will:

  • Recognize trauma and its effects on individuals and in relationships.
  • Understand the effects of trauma transmission in families.
  • Study neurological explanations for how the impacts of trauma, harm and neglect are stored in the brain and the body.
  • Experience practical techniques for transforming trauma.
  • Examine alternative approaches for healing harm and creating hope.
  • Discuss ethical practice and aligning one's practice with clients' core values.
Sessions by Day

Day One

  • The Impact of Trauma on Relationships (Dr. Frida Rundell)
  • Compassionate Witnessing Process, a demonstration (Dr. Frida Rundell)
  • Neurobiology of the Traumatic Stress Response: Practical Applications (Dr. Lyndra Bills)
  • Witnessing Reasonable Hope, an interactive live stream session (Dr. Kaethe Weingarten)

Day Two

  • Maintaining Healthy Emotional Regulation During Stress and Adversity (Dr. William Schneller & Marie Hough-Schneller)
  • Leading with Compassion: Healing the Wounds of Racial Trauma and Religious Bigotry (Kameelah Rashad)
  • Afternoon breakout sessions include:
    • Working Creatively through Art (Ellissa Collier & team)
    • Expressive  Feelings through Music (Michele Snyder)
    • Animal Assisted Strategies in Creating Safety (Lynette Reed & Andrew Lynn)
    • From Body Movement to Self Expression (Frida Rundell & Cathy Perno)

Day Three 

  • Restoring Hope despite Societal Prejudices (Joanne Pritchard)
  • Repairing Relationships through Connections (Joanne Pritchard)
  • Intercepting Harm & Neglect  through Family Empowerment and Engagement (Mary Jo Hebling)
  • Professional Dangerousness (Joanne Pritchard & Elizabeth Smull)
  • Ethical Implications Intercepting Trauma (Lynette Reed)

While the topics are serious, the event will provide an enjoyable atmosphere by interspersing activities for self-care and relationship building, including mindfulness exercises, chair yoga and evening social activities.

Apply Your Attendance at this Event Towards Graduate Coursework

Participation in this event can be applied toward one of the IIRP's hybrid graduate courses.

RP 540: Symposia and Conferences is a 3-credit hybrid course that employs online instruction to build upon your symposium experience. In this course, students build on their participation at an IIRP restorative practices conference, symposium or IIRP-approved event. Students supplement this interactive in-person experience with related readings, writing assignments, and online learning activities as part of a cohesive hybrid-learning course. Students actively evaluate, analyze, and synthesize presentations using restorative practices principles. (20-27 hrs. online; online hours vary by event with which this course is paired)

Earn Continuing Education Credits