Healing-Centered Engagement: Compassion, Connection, Community, Curiosity, and Ceremony

Training Overview

Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health (MACMH) is hosting a training opportunity with Dr. LaVerne Xilegg Demientieff, LCSW, statewide trainer, and a professor at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

This training will introduce you to the 5C’s of Healing Centered Engagement, which are significant beliefs and practices related to healing and wellness learned from and modeled by Alaska Native Elders. As you do good work in your life and job, consider reflecting on how these 5C’s can impact and support relationships with colleagues, clients, friends, relatives, as well as yourself. Stress and trauma inhibit learning and move us from our thinking brain into our emotional brain, which makes it difficult to concentrate, remember things, make decisions, and connect. When we learn about how stress and trauma impact our mind and body, we are more compassionate with ourselves and others. When we are curious about what causes pain and grief, we can help to create a connection and ceremony for healing. Healing happens when we are fully in our bodies and in relationship with others and our community. There are strategies for success we can utilize to create a community of care and feelings of belonging, which allow us to learn and engage together at the highest levels.

Learning Objectives

  • Participants will understand the ways in which toxic stress and unresolved trauma impact relationality and connectedness.
  • Participants will learn about and participate in strategies for creating healing-centered engagement within their work and life.
  • Participants will recognize how cultural and traditional practices can be utilized today for healing and wellness.

About the Presenter

Dr. LaVerne Xilegg Demientieff is Deg Xit’an (Dene) and her family is originally from Holy Cross and Anvik, Alaska. She grew up in Nenana and Anchorage and now lives in Fairbanks, working as a professor at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Bachelor of Social Work program, where she has taught since 2006. She is also a licensed master social worker through the State of Alaska. LaVerne is a statewide trainer on historical trauma and historical wellness, adverse childhood experiences, trauma-informed care, healing-centered engagement, and cultural strength and resilience. She is very active in learning and teaching her Deg Xinag language. She is deeply committed to exploring the connection between language & well-being and practicing compassionate, healing-centered language learning and revitalization.

LaVerne’s research interests include focusing on how cultural and traditional practices contribute to individual, family, group & community resilience, health, healing, and wellness, specifically with the Indigenous people of Alaska. She works closely with many social service agencies and Tribal organizations in Alaska to support their efforts towards healing-centered engagement within the organization as well as with their clients and communities. She works closely with Elders in research and teaching and is transformed and healed by their compassionate wisdom daily.

Two quotes from Elders that have inspired and ground her are: “Learning is healing” and “Take care of the old person we are going to become.”

Register through MACMH


Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health
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