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Recommended Reading for Trauma Support

This week we've decided to share with you five books that fit our mission and support the work we are doing to release our communities from the cyclical suffering of Trauma. We find ourselves returning to these often for clarity, inspiration, and motivation and we hope you enjoy them as much as we do.


The Body Keeps The Score

A pioneering researcher transforms our understanding of trauma and offers a bold new paradigm for healing in this New York Times bestseller​ Trauma is a fact of life. Veterans and their families deal with the painful aftermath of combat; one in five Americans has been molested; one in four grew up with alcoholics; one in three couples have engaged in physical violence. Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, one of the world’s foremost experts on trauma, has spent over three decades working with survivors. In The Body Keeps the Score, he uses recent scientific advances to show how trauma literally reshapes both body and brain, compromising sufferers’ capacities for pleasure, engagement, self-control, and trust. He explores innovative treatments—from neurofeedback and meditation to sports, drama, and yoga—that offer new paths to recovery by activating the brain’s natural neuroplasticity. Based on Dr. van der Kolk’s own research and that of other leading specialists, The Body Keeps the Score exposes the tremendous power of our relationships both to hurt and to heal—and offers new hope for reclaiming lives.

The Deepest Well: Healing the Long-Term Effects of Childhood Adversity

Dr. Nadine Burke Harris was already known as a crusading physician delivering targeted care to vulnerable children. But it was Diego—a boy who had stopped growing after a sexual assault—who galvanized her journey to uncover the connections between toxic stress and lifelong illnesses. ​The stunning news of Burke Harris’s research is just how deeply our bodies can be imprinted by ACEs—adverse childhood experiences like abuse, neglect, parental addiction, mental illness, and divorce. Childhood adversity changes our biological systems, and lasts a lifetime. For anyone who has faced a difficult childhood, or who cares about the millions of children who do, the fascinating scientific insight and innovative, acclaimed health interventions in The Deepest Well represent vitally important hope for preventing lifelong illness for those we love and for generations to come​.

The Courage to Heal

Come to terms with your past while moving powerfully into the future The Courage to Heal is an inspiring, comprehensive guide that offers hope and a map of the healing journey to every woman who was sexually abused as a child—and to those who care about her. Although the effects of child sexual abuse are long-term and severe, healing is possible. Weaving together personal experience with professional knowledge, the authors provide clear explanations, practical suggestions, and support throughout the healing process. Readers will feel recognized and encouraged by hundreds of moving first-person stories drawn from interviews and the authors' extensive work with survivors, both nationally and internationally.

The Transformation: Discovering Wholeness and Healing After Trauma

A world-recognized authority and acclaimed mind-body medicine pioneer presents the first evidence-based program to reverse the psychological and biological damage caused by trauma. In his role as the founder and executive director of The Center for Mind-Body Medicine (CMBM), Dr. Gordon has created and implemented what may well be the world’s largest and most effective program for healing population-wide psychological trauma. He and 130 international faculty have brought this program to populations as diverse as refugees from wars in the Balkans, the Middle East, and Africa; firefighters and U.S. military personnel and their families; student/parent/teacher school shooting survivors; and Native American children – as well as stressed out professionals, stay-at-home mothers, inner-city children, and people struggling with mental and physical disorders and end of life challenges. Dr. Gordon’s work is grounded in scientific evidence and timeless wisdom. Through his decades of first-hand experience, he understands that trauma will come to all of us sooner or later. That each of us has the capacity to understand and heal ourselves. And that the heartbreaking devastation that trauma causes can also open our hearts and minds to deeper understanding, enhanced meaning and purpose, and greater love. In the compassionate, compelling pages of The Transformation, he invites us on a step-by-step, evidence-based journey to heal the psychological and biological damage that trauma brings and to become the people whom we are meant to be.

Choose Love (TM) Enrichment program Educator Guide

The Choose Love Enrichment Program™ is a no cost, downloadable, Infant, Toddler, pre-K through 12th grade, next generation evidence-based social and emotional (SEL) classroom program teaching children how to choose love in any circumstance. The program focuses on four important character values – Courage, Gratitude, Forgiveness and Compassion in Action – which cultivates optimism, resilience and personal responsibility. Included elements are positive psychology, mindfulness, neuroscience, character values and more. Children learn that Choosing Love means choosing to live a life with Courage and Gratitude, practicing Forgiveness, and being Compassionate individuals. Being able to Choose Love promotes their resilience in challenging times. As a result, children learn personal responsibility and the understanding that they always have a choice in how they respond. They realize they can choose to love themselves, and others, and the program teaches them how to do this.

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