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Advanced AVP workshop completed!

Mary Watkins  |  Co-Chair, Depth Psychology Program
Community Psychology, Liberation Psychology, Ecopsychology Specialization
Watkins ≥ Mary
| originally posted on 29 Nov 2012
On the weekend of November 9-11, 27 alumni, students, faculty, and staff and six participants from PALABRA, a nonprofit after school program for at-risk youths, completed the Advanced Alternatives to Violence Workshop at Pacifica. This initiative is co-hosted by the Pacifica Alumni Association and the Community Psychology, Liberation Psychology, and Ecopsychology specialization of the Depth Psychology Program. The participants are on their way to becoming facilitators of Alternatives to Violence workshops in prisons, youth authority settings, community colleges, and community and faith groups.

The curriculum for the advanced workshop is responsive to the particular group’s needs and interests while deepening understanding and experience in how to transform anger and potentially violent situations. The focus of the group is determined through a consensus process, a key skill to develop mutual understanding and to making decisions in an inclusive manner. Sessions focus on the underlying causes of violence and the multiple feelings that give rise to anger and violence. Violence is generally understood as destructive to interpersonal and group relations, which is why it is important for those learning non-violent methods to also learn how to build trust and community.

PALABRA’s mission is to minimize youth-on-youth violence in Santa Barbara and youth involvement in the justice system by developing positive alternatives. The young men who joined us are training to become youth facilitators of Alternatives to Violence in Santa Barbara.

The next step for participants is a Training for Facilitators workshop. Some will be taking this inside prisons with inmates; others will return to Pacifica on the weekend of February 1-3. If you are interested in joining this project, please email me:

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