Author: sgiacomucci (Page 1 of 5)

Low-Cost Trauma Therapy and EMDR

The Phoenix Center offers low-cost trauma therapy and EMDR sessions through our graduate internship program. We are invested in training the best experiential trauma therapists in the field. You can trust that you will experience excellent quality clinical services provided by Phoenix Trauma Center interns. Our interns receive regular training and 2-3 hours of weekly supervision from our director Dr. Scott Giacomucci, DSW, LCSW, BCD, CGP, FAAETS, TEP. Interns also receive weekly supervision from an additional supervisor at the Phoenix Center – in addition to supervision provided by their university program (professors and field placement liaison). They participate in regular trainings and professional development to increase their understanding and expertise of trauma. Each of our interns are offered opportunities for training in EMDR, psychodrama, and Internal Family Systems (IFS). Our interns support our therapists co-leading psychotherapy groups and are engaged in leading their own free or low-cost community groups.


Intern’s sessions start at $85 (with a very flexible sliding scale)
Contact us to secure your spot – Support@PhoenixTraumaCenter.com | 484-440-9416

SEE OUR CURRENT GRADUATE INTERNS OFFERING LOW-COST THERAPY HERE


Benefits of Working with an Intern

As noted, by our friends at Spilove Psychotherapy, there are many benefits to working with a graduate intern which includes lower costs, receiving the expertise of multiple supervising therapists, the benefits of ‘beginner’s mind’, increased passion, and up-to-date practice standards.

Lower-Cost Therapy Sessions – Our interns are all masters-level students towards the end of their programs and getting ready to enter the field. Nevertheless, their session fees are half or one-third of what other therapists charge; and they can be very flexible with their sliding scales.

Receiving the Expertise of Multiple Supervising Therapists – All interns are receiving supervision, training, teaching, and oversight from multiple experienced therapists. This includes weekly supervision with Phoenix Center’s director and another therapists from our center – as well as oversight and/or teaching from multiple professors and a field placement liaison from their university graduate program. Most interns are actively engaged in more reflection, training, supervision, and professional development than other professionals who have already graduated. This means that your intern therapist is spending hours each week reading, writing, reflecting, discussing, and reviewing their work – actively trying to be the best that they can be.

The Benefits of ‘Beginner’s Mind’ – Though many of our intern therapists have experience in the mental health field already or have years of experience in another field, they are starting a new chapter in their professional journey and becoming a therapist. Interns are just starting out so they aren’t just going through the motions of being a therapist. Interns are exploding with curiosity, excitement, passion, and creativity!

Increased Passion and Energy – Interns aren’t weighted down by years of vicarious trauma or burnout that sometimes impact experienced therapists. Instead, intern therapists are bringing new energy, spontaneity, and passion into their work each day. They are excited to begin a new career that they have been preparing for and eager to offer the compassion, connection, and validation that you might be craving.

State-of-the-Art Practice Standards – Graduate students are actively engaged in intense learning through reading, discussions, reflection, and supervised practice. Our field is evolving rapidly (especially with new research findings related to trauma and the brain). Most therapists in PA are only required to complete 15 hours of continuing education each year which simply isn’t enough to stay current on all the new findings in the field. Graduate students however are learning state-of-the-art practice standards. Intern therapists enter the field while continuing to pursue rigorous studies providing current information about the practice of psychotherapy.

The process to obtain certification as a practitioner in psychodrama (CP) is a comprehensive process requiring 780 training hours, a year-long supervised practicum, a written exam, and an on-site exam. For full details on certification, visit the website of the American Board of Examiners in Sociometry, Psychodrama, and Group Psychotherapy.

The written exam is only offered once per year in October which creates extra pressure to prepare and pass the exam for applicants. Psychodrama training has traditionally emphasized the experiential components of the learning process over didactic teaching of psychodrama’s history, theory, philosophy, research, and ethics. Understandably, many applicants for the exam seek a refresher course or additional learning related to these areas before taking their written exam. Together with Actions Explorations, we have created a comprehensive pre-recorded video course which includes 7-parts (one for each section of the written exam) that you can digest at your own pace. The course includes teaching, examples, and discussion on all parts of the exam, as well as a review of nearly every question asked on past exams (which are published by the board as a exam study tool). The course can be purchased as a 7-part package for only $230; or as individual courses – Click Here to View the Course Purchasing Options

The exam prep course includes the following seven parts, which can also be purchased individually:

1. History
2. Philosophy
3. Methodology
4. Ethics
5. Sociometry
6. Research and Evaluation
7. Related fields

The course instructor, Dr. Scott Giacomucci, DSW, LCSW, BCD, CGP, FAAETS, TEP, has served as a grader for the ABE exam in the past while publishing and teaching extensively in each of the seven exam areas. Scott has published a popular textbook on psychodrama, co-edited the autobiography of Jacob Moreno, teaches psychodrama in multiple universities and ongoing training offerings in Media, Pennsylvania. He also is co-chair of the psychodrama research committee, co-chief-editor of the Journal of Sociometry, Psychodrama, and Group Psychotherapy, and serves on the Executive Council of the American Society of Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama (ASGPP).

To learn more, check out the promotional video above or visit the course details on Action Explorations’ webpage here – https://actionexplorations.education/bundle_details/12/comprehensive-preparation-for-psychodrama-certification-7-modules

Trauma-Informed Care: The Basics

Dr. Scott Giacomucci, DSW, LCSW, BCD, CGP, FAAETS, TEP

“Trying to implement trauma specific practices without first implementing trauma informed organisational culture change is like throwing seeds on dry land” – Dr. Sandra Bloom

Trauma-Informed Care

There are many different aspects and nuances within a trauma-informed approach. SAMHSA (2014) describes four “R”s  as key assumptions within a trauma-informed approach. A provider that operates from a trauma-informed framework, implements the following four “R”s:

  1. Realizes that trauma has extensive impacts on individuals and understands that there are multiple paths to recovering from trauma.
  2. Recognizes the unique symptoms and manifestations of trauma or traumatic stress for individuals, groups, families, communities, and staff members.
  3. Responds by implementing policies, procedures, and practices which are guided by trauma-informed principles.
  4. Resists Retraumatization in all aspects of the work

Six Trauma-Informed Principles

SAMHSA (2014) outlines six core principles of trauma-informed practice which guide practitioners and organizations in embodying a trauma-informed care that prevents retraumatization and supports healing. SAMHSA defines trauma-informed care through these key principles (2014):

  1. Safety: Providers promote physical and emotional safety through the design of their facility, social interactions, and the provision of services. Providers seek to understand what safety means through the perspective and experience of those they serve.
  2. Trustworthiness and Transparency: Decision-making at all levels is done with transparency for staff, clients, and the community in the spirit of establishing and maintaining trust.
  3. Peer Support: Trauma survivors are incorporated as essential members of one’s recovery process using their lived experiences to promote healing.
  4. Collaboration and Mutuality: Power dynamics between various staff members and with clients are managed in a way that values each person, emphasizes each role as important, and distributes power and decision-making.
  5. Empowerment, Voice, and Choice: Providers emphasize the resilience and autonomy of clients, communities, and staff. Everyone is empowered in decision-making, goal-setting, and self-advocacy. “Staff are facilitators of recovery rather than controllers of recovery” (Brown, Baker, & Wilcox, 2012, as cited by SAMHSA, 2014, p. 11).
  6. Cultural, Historical, and Gender Issues: Providers actively address their own biases while developing practices/policies that are conducive to the needs and values related to the race, ethnicity, culture, religion, gender, sexuality, and age of those they serve and employ. The impact of historic/collective trauma or discrimination is acknowledged while mitigating the potential for reenactments of oppression and microaggressions. The healing potential of cultural and identity values are leveraged and emphasized for clients when appropriate.

Trauma-Informed Organization Areas

Building upon the work of others (Bloom & Farragher, 2011; Harris & Fallot, 2001), SAMHSA (2014) has also outlined ten organizational domains for consideration when developing a trauma-informed system. These ten domains are meant to help guide providers and practitioners implement trauma-informed principles into their work. The articulation of these ten domains also illuminates how trauma-informed practice informs not only the ways in which treatment is provided, but every aspect of organizational structure and operations.

  1. Governance and Leadership
  2. Policy
  3. Physical Environment
  4. Engagement and Involvement
  5. Cross Sector Collaboration
  6. Screening, Assessment, Treatment Services
  7. Training and Workforce Development
  8. Progress Monitoring & Quality Assurance
  9. Financing
  10. Evaluation

Being trauma-informed requires critical examination and reflection by individuals and organizations. It isn’t simply a buzzword to be thrown around, but a comprehensive philosophy that guides and informs policy, organizational structure, work culture, community engagement, and how services are provided.

Trauma-Informed vs Trauma-Focused

In discussions about trauma-informed care, it is essential that we also differentiate “trauma-informed services” and “trauma-focused services”. Many mistakenly use the terms interchangeably but there is an important difference (Giacomucci, 2021). “Trauma-focused services” refer to practices that are directly provided for trauma survivors to address and/or treat post-traumatic stress disorder. The trauma-Informed philosophy describes the processes by which services are provided and the larger context in which they are offered. Whereas Trauma-focused services are dedicated to trauma-related content. One of the major differences then is that trauma-informed care highlights “process” while trauma-focused care centralizes trauma “content”.

Ideally, trauma-focused services are also offered within a trauma-informed framework. Unfortunately, this is not always the case as there are a multitude of examples of trauma treatment programs, practices, and providers that have been known to retraumatize participants without regard to the six trauma-informed principles. It should be emphasized that learning to integrate and offer trauma-informed and trauma-focused services requires education, training, self-awareness, and commitment. Most trauma-focused approaches or treatments for PTSD demand extensive training and should not be offered by professionals outside the scope of their competency. Practitioners who are not aware of the limits of their practice risk retraumatizing participants, especially when attempting to implement more complex interventions. This is one of the problems that has negatively impacted the reputation of psychodrama and other trauma treatments.

Excerpts from Chapter 1 of:   Giacomucci, S. (under contract for 2023). Trauma-Informed Group Work, Psychodrama, and Leadership: A Guide for Therapists, Facilitators, & Leaders

 

The 4 ‘R’s of Trauma-Informed Care: What it Means to Really Be Trauma-Informed

This video presents an introduction to the 4 ‘R’s of Trauma-Informed Care:
-Realize
-Recognize
-Respond
-Resist Retraumatization

Each of the 4 are described in detail by Dr. Scott Giacomucci, a Fellow of the American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress (FAAETS). These four ‘R’s are essential knowledge for all trauma-informed practitioners, providers, and organizational leaders. The four ‘R’s provide a simplified framework for applying trauma-informed principles from the SAMHSA. See other videos on this channel for additional context including:
SAMHSA’s 6 trauma-informed principles – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ANRlWfuWOGQ&t=1s
What is Trauma? – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4Js6VTu9yw&t=
What is PTSD? – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LbpdG2tiX8c&t=
Post-Traumatic Growth – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uFGJI1o-ciQ&t=

Visit our website to learn more about how we can help your organization implement trauma-informed principles and trauma-focused group work – https://www.phoenixtraumacenter.com/training-for-your-team-in-experiential-trauma-therapy/

#trauma #stress #traumatic #traumainformed #traumafocused #traumainformedprinciples #traumatherapy #traumahealing #traumawork #ptsd #traumaticstress #posttraumaticstress #posttraumaticstressdisorder #ptsdhealing #ptsdtherapy #organizationaldevelopment #traumathearpist #SAMHSA #traumainformedcare #traumainformedpractices

Addiction & Trauma: A Psychodramatic Approach

We are excited to share the newly released on-demand video training by Dr. Scott Giacomucci, Addiction & Trauma: A Psychodramatic Approach, hosted by the new Action Explorations Education online education platform.

This course involves a lecture on the intersection of addiction and trauma as they related to the basics of psychodrama psychotherapy. A 1-1 individual psychodrama session is demonstrated via telehealth with a focus of strength-based roles for recovery. After the psychodrama demonstration, the demo is processed and analyzed with additional insights.

Here’s a trailer for a sneak peak of the course:



Access the 4.5 hour course ($100 for 100 day access) here – https://actionexplorations.education/home/course/addiction-amp-trauma-a-psychodramatic-approach/16

#trauma #addiction #traumarecovery #addictionrecovery #traumaandaddiction #traumahealing #traumainformed #addictiontreatment #emptychair #psychodrama #posttraumaticstress #traumaticstress #PostTraumaticStressDisorder #ptsd #socialwork #counseling #psychology #experientialtherapy #experientialtraumatherapy

Post-Traumatic Growth

Free Downloadable Handout here – https://secureservercdn.net/198.71.233.66/29d.9d3.myftpupload.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/08/Post-Traumatic-Growth-Handout.pdf

Dr. Scott Giacomucci, DSW, LCSW, BCD, FAAETS, PAT

What is Post Traumatic Growth?

Post traumatic growth (PTG) is the phenomenon of growing after trauma or hardship.

This idea is depicted throughout literature, history, religion, legends, and philosophy. It is certainly not a new idea, though the term “post traumatic growth” and the study of it are new. The fact that growth often occurs as a direct result of difficulties, losses, traumas, and changes is evidenced throughout time. One might even argue that all of our personal strengths are a result of surviving and finding our way through difficulties, struggles, and hardships.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, & Post-Traumatic Growth

A traumatic experience is one that overwhelms our ability to cope and process. One event may be traumatic for one person and not traumatic for another person – it is a subjective experience. An inclusive definition of trauma includes violence, abuse, death/loss, neglect, abandonment, collective trauma, discrimination based on identity, and witnessing trauma. Post-traumatic stress (and PTSD) is characterized by avoidance, numbing, hyperarousal, hypervigilance, dissociation, reexperiencing (flashbacks, nightmares, intrusive images, etc), and negative thoughts, beliefs, and emotions. Many trauma survivors experience aspects of post-traumatic growth and symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder at the same time.

About 25% of adults that experience a traumatic event will develop Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). However, because of the increased vulnerability of children, childhood trauma is even more impactful resulting in 50% of children developing PTSD symptoms after a traumatic experience. At the same time, Post-Traumatic Growth research found that over 65% of trauma survivors report some type of growth after trauma.

After surviving a traumatic event, you are significantly more likely to experience post-traumatic growth than post-traumatic stress disorder.

Five Common Areas of Post-Traumatic Growth

The literature on post traumatic growth demonstrates five distinct areas that trauma survivors identify as common domains of growth. The five domains of post traumatic growth are:

  1. A new sense of opportunities after trauma

Trauma and loss shake us to our core and challenge us in ways that we might not have imagined as possible. As a result, many survivors begin to see new possibilities in life and the opening of new doors of opportunity.

  1. New value in relationships

The process of coping with trauma requires relationships – friends, family, therapists, support groups, etc. As humans, we are neurobiologically wired to regulate our emotions through relationships. The experience of utilizing support after trauma increases these connections and helps us remember how important they are.

  1. New sense of personal strength

Surviving trauma and asking for help to cope with its aftermath requires incredible strength. Trauma survivors demonstrate extraordinary courage, resilience, vulnerability, trust, hope, and compassion, among other strengths. When an overwhelming event forces us to utilize all the strengths we have (and often develop new ones), we are much more aware of them going forward. “If I survived that trauma, I can survive anything”

  1. Greater appreciation for life

Trauma, by its nature, threatens our safety, security, and often our lives. Trauma and loss remind us how precious life is and how fragile it can be. It has the ability to help us see the big picture and reconsider our priorities in life.

  1. Deepening of spiritual/religious views

Because trauma is so often experienced through relationships and involving other human beings, many trauma survivors turn to spirituality or religion for strength, hope, and inspiration. Trauma is an existential crisis that challenges us to make sense of it, often through spiritual, religious, or existential belief systems.

These five domains of post-traumatic growth are sometimes simplified further into three categories: 1) Quality of Life, 2) Perception of self, & 3) Experience of relationships and others

Examples of Post Traumatic Growth

Examples of post traumatic growth exist all around you – and in your own life story. Chances are that you have grown in some way after a difficult experience in your life. Some common examples of post traumatic growth include: valuing relationships more after death; appreciating life more after working through a hardship; helping others that are experiencing something you went through previously; positively changing your perception of yourself after getting through a difficult time; creating change and new possibilities in your life after trauma; starting your own support group; creating changes in your community after a painful experience; advocating for policy changes and social change; etc.

Examples and metaphors of post traumatic growth even exist in nature: the extraordinary pressure that creates diamonds; an irritant in an oyster creates a pearl; volcanos that create new islands; forest fires that give way to new growth; stars in the darkness; sunrise after the dark night; and even plants growing from manure and dirt!

Post-traumatic growth is also something that professionals experience as a direct result of vicarious trauma and working with trauma survivors. For more info an vicarious post-traumatic growth, visit this link – https://www.phoenixtraumacenter.com/vicarious-post-traumatic-growth/

#trauma #traumarecovery #traumahealing #traumatherapy #posttraumaticgrowth #vicariousposttraumaticgrowth #ptsd #ptsdrecovery #ptsdtreatment #experientialtherapy #growthaftertrauma #traumacounseling #traumapsychology

Phoenix Trauma Center Services

The Phoenix Center for Experiential Trauma Therapy is a psychotherapy practice located in Media, Pennsylvania specializing in the treatment of PTSD, trauma, grief/loss, and substance abuse.

We offer a variety of therapy services including:

We also offer various free community groups and workshops led by interns and therapists. Note that these are not therapy groups but instead are community groups focused on peer support, education, and personal growth.

Furthermore, we offer a variety of services for professionals including:

You can also find a variety of free educational resources available through the Phoenix Center including:

For a downloadable tri-fold of our services, click here – https://secureservercdn.net/198.71.233.66/29d.9d3.myftpupload.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/Phoenix-Center-Trifold-2021.pdf

To contact us regarding services, please email Support@PhoenixTraumaCenter.com or call us at 484-440-9416

Psychodrama as an Effective Treatment for Trauma and PTSD

By Dr. Scott Giacomucci, DSW, LCSW, BCD, FAAETS, PAT

Published by APA Div 49, The Group Psychologist

“Recent findings have challenged trauma therapists to consider alternative and adjunctive approaches to talk therapy and cognitive approaches. At the same time, these new findings serve to validate experiential philosophy, theories, and approaches that Jacob Moreno proposed decades prior.”

Read the full article here on APA’s website – https://www.apadivisions.org/division-49/news-events/psychodrama-trauma-treatment

Low-Cost Trauma Therapy Services

The Phoenix Trauma Center’s mission is to provide quality services to our clients and high quality education for professionals. We are invested in training the best experiential trauma therapists in the field. Our internship program allows us to fulfill both parts of our mission while also providing financially accessible services. We receive a dozen or two internship requests each year and carefully choose graduate-level interns that already have experience, training, or other advanced knowledge related to our work. You can trust that you will experience excellent quality clinical services provided by Phoenix Trauma Center interns.

Our interns receive regular training and weekly supervision from our director Dr. Scott Giacomucci, DSW, LCSW, BCD, FAAETS, PAT. Interns also receive weekly supervision from an additional therapist at the Phoenix Center – in addition to supervision provided by their university program (professors and field placement liaison). They participate in regular trainings and professional development to increase their understanding and expertise of trauma. Our interns support our therapists co-leading psychotherapy groups and are engaged in leading their own free or low-cost community groups.

Intern’s sessions start at $75 (with a very flexible sliding scale)
Contact us to secure your spot – Support@PhoenixTraumaCenter.com 484-440-9416

Learn About Our Graduate Intern Therapists

It is also important to note that our interns are only with us for about a year and may or may not stay with us upon graduate. This means that your intern therapist may need to end sessions with you when they graduate and/or you may need to begin working with a different intern at that time.

Benefits of Working with an Intern

As noted, by our friends at Spilove Psychotherapy, there are many benefits to working with a graduate intern which include lower-costs, receiving the expertise of multiple supervising therapists, the benefits of ‘beginner’s mind’, increased passion, and up-to-date practice standards.

Lower-Cost Therapy Sessions – Our interns are all masters-level students towards the end of their programs and getting ready to enter the field. Nevertheless, their session fees are half or one-third of what other therapists charge; and they can be very flexible with their sliding scales.

Receiving the Expertise of Multiple Supervising Therapists – All interns are receiving supervision, training, teaching, and oversight from multiple experienced therapists. This includes weekly supervision with Phoenix Center’s director and another therapists from our center – as well as oversight and/or teaching from multiple professors and a field placement liaison from their university graduate program. Most interns are actively engaged in more reflection, training, supervision, and professional development than other professionals who have already graduated. This means that your intern therapist is spending hours each week reading, writing, reflecting, discussing, and reviewing their work – actively trying to be the best that they can be.

The Benefits of ‘Beginner’s Mind’ – Though many of our intern therapists have experience in the mental health field already or have years of experience in another field, they are starting a new chapter in their professional journey and becoming a therapist. Interns are just starting out so they aren’t just going through the motions of being a therapist. Interns are exploding with curiosity, excitement, passion, and creativity!

Increased Passion and Energy – Interns aren’t weighted down by years of vicarious trauma or burnout that sometimes impact experienced therapists. Instead, intern therapists are bringing new energy, spontaneity, and passion into their work each day. They are excited to begin a new career that they have been preparing for and eager to offer the compassion, connection, and validation that you might be craving.

State-of-the-Art Practice Standards – Graduate students are actively engaged in intense learning through reading, discussions, reflection, and supervised practice. Our field is evolving rapidly (especially with new research findings related to trauma and the brain). Most therapists in PA are only required to completed 15 hours of continuing education each year which simply isn’t enough to stay current on all the new findings in the field. Graduate students however, are learning state-of-the-art practice standards. Intern therapists are enter the field while continuing to pursue rigorous studies providing current information about the practice of psychotherapy.

Are you interested in interning at the Phoenix Center?

Our interns are able to provide quality service at a low cost. This is an opportunity to grow together! Our center understands the need for quality services and the financial difficulties some may have accessing services. Our internship program allow us to bring our clients low-cost trauma therapy services.

Please note, this is a very competitive internship program accepting final-year graduate students only. We are receiving an increased number of internship requests each year. Those with prior training and experience in experiential therapy, trauma therapy, and personal growth work will be given priority. Furthermore, we will prioritize interns who share our goal of making quality trauma therapy services accessible to diverse communities.

We strongly encourage Black, Indigenous, People of Color, LGBTQIA+, and bilingual people to apply.

To apply for an internship placement, send the following to Scott@PhoenixTraumaCenter.com:

  • Updated resume/CV
    • Include all related experience/training in trauma, addictions, and experiential work
  • Cover letter detailing how your interests align with our work
  • 2 professional references who would be familiar with your work (1 must be from a field supervisor)

Trauma-Informed Principles & Practices

Defining & Explaining Trauma-Informed Principles

This video offers an introduction to trauma-informed principles and why they are important for all organizations. The difference between “trauma-informed” and “trauma-focused” is outlined while commenting on trends in the mental health treatment field. Leaders, supervisors, professionals, students, and others interested in learning about trauma will find this video helpful.

Or, click here to access Dr. Scott’s new ebook for free (see chapter 7 on trauma, trauma-informed care, and trauma-focused services) – https://link.springer.com/book/10.1007/978-981-33-6342-7

Don’t forget to explore our other videos on this channel which include educational content on trauma, ptsd, addiction, and experiential trauma therapy.

#trauma​#traumaticstress​#traumaticexperience​#ptsd​#posttraumaticstress​#posttraumaticstressdisorder​#traumainformed​#traumafocused​#traumatreatment​#traumaeducation​#traumawork​#traumacounseling​#traumareaction​#traumasymptoms

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