Session Descriptions

Session Descriptions

Handouts for sessions can be found on the At A Glance page, underneath each session title, as they become available.


Friday, April 27 | 8:45 - 9:00 AM
Welcome & Introduction
Presenter: Jackie List, Executive Director, Safe Shelter of St. Vrain Valley


Friday, April 27 | 9:00 - 9:50 AM

Keynote: Impact Over the Lifetime From Childhood Exposure to Domestic Abuse
Presenter: Jacqueline Miller, Survivor/Expert, Texas Council on Family Violence, NRCDV
From a personal perspective, this address will encompass the impact over the lifetime from childhood exposure to domestic abuse, how a survivor’s knowing their ACE (Adverse Childhood Experiences) score can be used to build resilience, and how trauma changes systems.


Friday, April 27 | Breakout Sessions #1 | 10:00 - 11:30 AM

Moving Beyond Screening: Trauma-Informed Evidence-Based Strategies to Support Health Care’s Response to IPV/Adolescent Relationship Abuse and Trafficking
Presenter: Rebecca Levenson

IPV and Human Trafficking (HT) have broad health consequences that are well established in literature. Providers cite numerous barriers to addressing abuse with their clients: lack of time; not being sure how to start the conversation; not being sure what to do with a positive disclosure; and fear of jeopardizing their relationship with their client/patient because they might have to report something to child welfare/law enforcement. Recognizing these barriers to disclosure-driven practices, such as screening using yes/no questions, is essential in order for health providers and systems to forge a different path in their work regarding IPV. This session will offer alternative evidence-based, trauma-informed approaches that address both the needs of providers and of the clients/patients they serve. These interventions are helping to prevent relationship abuse, as well as increasing safety and improving health for those who are exposed to violence. Through the evidence-based Futures Without Violence CUES intervention, we demonstrate how to support provider conversations about complicated subject matters and promote resiliency through altruism. As a result of attending this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Practice using the tools and troubleshoot potential barriers.
  • Implement CUES intervention to address IPV/adolescent relationship abuse and HT.
  • Create an action plan with next steps for their program to improve their prevention and response strategies.

Adolescent Brain Development: Responding to Trauma and Building Resilience
Presenter: Dr. Margaret Tomcho

This will be an interactive session discussing brain development, both normal and in the context of trauma, highlighting the unique teen brain. Attendees will gain an appreciation for:

  • A trauma informed approach to teens.
  • How resilience can be built and fostered.

The Hidden Billion Dollar Cost
Presenter: Amy Pohl
From financial abuse, medical costs, lost productivity, use of the court systems, to name just a few, abusers’ behavior takes a financial toll on survivors, communities, and businesses. The cost of lost productivity in the workplace alone due to relationship abuse is estimated at $727.8 million. The overall cost to employers more than $8.3 billion.

This workshop will discuss and explain the hidden material costs of perpetrator behavior and its direct impact on the businesses and the health of the community.


Friday, April 27 | 11:45 - 12:45 PM

Lunch Plenary: Moving Upstream: Creating Equitable Community Environments for Healing, Health and Safety
Presenters: Alisha Somji & Lisa Fujie Parks
How can we holistically create healthy and equitable environments that both meet the needs of survivors and support the prevention of intimate partner violence (IPV) in the first place? In this session, we will discuss the importance of addressing community determinants of intimate partner violence and IPV inequities to support healing and safe relationships. Learning objectives:

  • Articulate how equitable community environments can support healing, health, and safety.
  • Describe community determinants of intimate partner violence and IPV inequities.
  • Draw inspiration from communities collaborating to influence the community environment.

About Prevention Institute: Prevention Institute is a nonprofit, national center dedicated to improving community health and well-being by building momentum for effective primary prevention. Primary prevention means taking action to build resilience and to prevent problems before they occur. Since its founding in 1997, the organization has focused on community prevention, injury and violence prevention, health equity, healthy eating and active living, positive youth development, health system transformation and mental health and well-being. https://www.preventioninstitute.org.

Prevention Institute report on A Health Equity and Multisector Approach to Preventing Domestic Violence: https://www.preventioninstitute.org/publications/health-equity-and-multisector-approach-preventing-domestic-violence


Friday, April 27 | Breakout Sessions #2 | 1:00 - 2:30 PM

Addressing Abuse, Violence and Sexual Exploitation in Reproductive Health Settings: Trauma-Informed Approaches to Empower both Patients and Providers
Presenter: Rebecca Levenson
The impact of controlling, abusive and exploitative relationships on reproductive health are well documented. Toxic relationships result in unwanted, unplanned pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections. For these issues to be addressed successfully, we must understand the prevalence and impact of reproductive coercion: when a partner wants you to be pregnant as a means of control. This session will offer evidence-based, trauma-informed approaches that address both the needs of providers and the adolescents and adults they serve. These interventions are helping to prevent relationship abuse, as well as increasing safety and improving health for those who have been exposed to violence. The session will explore research on teen dating violence, reproductive coercion, and trafficking/sexual exploitation, and introduce an intervention for reproductive coercion. The workshop will offer strategies for rethinking the way providers talk about confidentiality, and effective ways to begin conversations about healthy and unhealthy relationships.
As a result of attending this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • List three health consequences for patients experiencing relationship abuse/IPV within their programs.
  • Define reproductive coercion.
  • Identify one contraceptive strategy to prevent unwanted pregnancies for survivors of reproductive coercion.

Uncovering Trauma: Legal Advocacy for Victims of Crime
Presenters: Ashley Arens and Kazi Houston
Experiencing trauma can have an impact on the neurobiology of survivors of domestic violence. Navigating the legal system while coping with trauma can be particularly challenging. In this session we will discuss the physical and psychological effects of trauma, how it can impact participation in the legal system, and how to best advocate for the survivors you work with.

Sensory Processing and Trauma: Promoting Involuntary Nervous System Regulation: Part I
Presenter: Ana Do Valle
This lecture and the following practicum will allow participants to understand the relationship between sensory processing and emotional regulation. The sessions are built upon each other and participants are encouraged to attend both sessions.

In this session, participants will be shown how the implicit body-based memory of trauma can be manifested in the sensory systems of a child or adult and affect their behavior and overall resilience. Further, we will investigate how early autonomic system dysregulation can manifest into health conditions. This session will offer a lens into autonomic function and identify signs of nervous system dysregulation.


Friday, April 27 | Breakout Sessions #3 | 2:45 - 4:15 PM

Cultural Socialization of Manhood and Its Impact on Men’s Emotional Health
Presenter: Tim Wienecke
Modern cultural masculine norms emphasize that men and boys should be powerful, fearless, in control, emotionless and strong. These notions can be repressive and toxic. The impact of toxic masculinity on men’s partners and children cannot be denied: Men and boys who adhere to rigid, traditional notions of gender roles and masculinity are more likely to report having used violence against a partner. Clinicians are in a unique position to create positive change in our community by engaging men with whom they work about the internalized pain that these limitations have created and work on strategies that can release them toward a more healthy, respectful manhood. In this training, we will explore how this toxicity integrates into the male identity, the clinical impact it has, and explore ways to empower our work with the men we serve.

Participants will:

  • Gain awareness of the clinical impact of “toxic masculinity” on men in our culture.
  • Develop basic intervention strategies to better engage the men in our care.

Medical Mandated Reporting: What the new law means for professionals and survivors
Presenter: Tracey Tatro Swindle 
With the recent passage of updated requirements for reporting, this session will be an important learning tool for attendees and their coworkers. Session attendees will:

  • Gain an understanding of the change regarding medical mandated reporting and how it affects medical professionals, advocates, law enforcement, and survivors.
  • Gain an understanding how to better assist survivors and help survivors find the courage to seek medical care .

Sensory Processing and Trauma: Promoting Involuntary Nervous System Regulation: Part II
Presenter: Ana Do Valle
This practicum session will expand on what was covered in Part I. Participants will learn not only the negative impact on health into adulthood but also therapeutic strategies to promote regulation, restoration and resilience in the nervous system.


Friday, April 27 | 4:30-5:30 PM

Closing Plenary: Moving Forward to Together: Taking Action to Prevent Intimate Partner Violence Presenters: Alisha Somji & Lisa Fujie Parks
After a full day of learning, where do we go from here? How can we collaboratively work together toward community solutions? Thinking about the community determinants of intimate partner violence we’d like to change in our communities, we will begin to assess immediate opportunities to bridge-build between prevention and intervention through multisector work and discuss future directions with sectors such as housing and healthcare.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn from examples of effective primary prevention strategies using the Spectrum of Prevention.
  • Identify personal, organizational and sector strengths and contributions to preventing intimate partner violence.
  • Identify opportunities for the intimate partner violence movement to bridge-build between multiple sectors in holistic ways for prevention and intervention.