Healing Ways: Group Crisis Interventions for Indigenous Peoples

Requesting This Course:

Course Description:

Language and diversity, gender roles, spiritual beliefs and practices, cultural norms,  family structure, past life experiences and historic cultural teachings all influence how Indigenous men and women are affected by trauma. The richness of historic traditional teachings resonate with Indigenous Peoples and are extremely important when providing guidance for wellness in crisis intervention work. In this course, information on signs of distress, suggestions for wellness and healthy coping and even the teaching style of the course emphasize traditional healing practices and lessons of the Medicine Wheel. The curriculum and information in this course are presented in a way that is culturally focused and honors the history of Indigenous Peoples in Canada and the United States. The Healing Ways Group Crisis Intervention skills provide a strategy for discussing the experience and some significant steps that can be taken for recovery from that experience that incorporates cultural teachings and the inclusion of Elders and Traditional Healers, prayer, smudging and other ceremonies as a natural part of the intervention practices.

Indigenous communities differ in their beliefs, cultural practices and history. This curriculum is intended to be broad enough to be used by any Indigenous community whose intention is to incorporate the cultural practices and beliefs of their own people in their healing practices after highly distressing or traumatic experiences.

Program Highlights:


History and Challenges of Indigenous Peoples

  • Historic Trauma in Canada and the United States
  • Residential School Trauma
  • Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women
  • 60’s Scoop and foster homes

Resiliency and Strengths of Indigenous Peoples

Definitions – Common language                   

  • Signs of Traumatic Stress
  • Post – Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Suicide and Depression
  • Post – Traumatic Growth
  • Meaningful communication
  • Teaching to Themes in an intervention
  • Use of Elders, Talking Sticks, Feathers or Rocks
  • The Teachings of Medicine Wheel for leading a balanced lifestyle
  • The 7 F’s of Wellness and Healthy Coping

Importance of a good Introduction

  • Informational Group Intervention
  • Group Information Meeting (Adapted from ICISF Crisis Management Briefing)

DAY 2:

Interactive Group Interventions

  • Calming Discussion (Adapted from ICISF Defusing)
  • Group Crisis Conversation (Adapted from ICISF CISD)

Continuing Education Information:

Two-Day Course

General Contact Hours:

14 Contact Hours: 1.4 General CEUs from University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) Dept. of Emergency Health Services Professional and Continuing Education (PACE)

*Based on a formula of 1 Continuing Education Unit for every 10 contact/classroom hours.

Profession Specific Contact Hours:

  • 14 PDHs for EAPs (Expiration Date – May 31, 2021)
  • 14 CE Credits for National Certified Addiction Counselors (Expiration Date – March 1, 2021)

*PLEASE NOTE: These hours are only applicable towards courses offered at Live Trainings, Regional Trainings, Online Courses, and the World Congress.

Approved Instructor Courses:

It is up to the Approved Instructors or sponsoring agency to apply for profession specific Continuing Education Unit’s if they choose.  Learn more on our CEU Information page.

** Please check with your state licensing board prior to registration to see if they will accept the certificate of completion as a means for continuing education.