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Mon-Wed, Oct 30-Nov 1, 2017

Oct 30 - 9am to 5pm
Oct 31 - 9am to 5pm
Nov 1 - 9am to 3pm
Lunch is at 12:30 to 1:30 each day. There is morning and afternoon coffee breaks.

Donald Gordon Conference Centre (accomodation is available)
421 Union St W, Kingston, ON K7L 3N6


    RESIDENTS: $680
    This includes 2 nights accommodation, breakfast (2), lunch (3), dinner (2), continuous coffee breaks (3 days).
    $135 a night Bed & Breakfast for anyone who wants to arrive on the 29th or depart on the 2nd.

    This includes lunch(3), dinner (2), continuous coffee breaks (3 days)

CANCELATION POLICY: Refund will be issued only if we have a waitlist.

Helping children become better at integrating trauma, anxieties and insecurities requires their caregiver’s to have good self-regulation skills and to find a way to be socially engaged with children whose fear of relationships make them reactive and defensive. Often parents enter blocked care when their children repeatedly and strongly reject their attempts to connect or when their own attachment histories have made it difficult to build the brain circuitry that supports compassion and holding their child “in mind”, an ability that Diana Fosha argues is a critical component for creating change. Teaching parents to be PACEful to allow for change in their child is not possible when they are defensive and protective and work with the child often must start with work with the parent.

Danny Yeung in his key note address will demonstrate how Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy (AEDP) transforms trauma in a client who has survived childhood sexual abuse by catalyzing three state transformations across four distinctive neuropsychological states. He will illustrate how the moment-to moment attunement by the therapist allows for a shift from rigid defensive states to affective states that are characterized by relief, lightness and hope. The client is then helped to mourn the self and develop experiences of emotional serenity, wisdom and a sense of truth, a cognitive and emotional coherence that allows for a new, adaptive and non-shame-based narrative.

Danny will provide a framework outlining the complex theoretical roots of AEDP that include attachment theory, emotions theory and neuroscience, illustrate how transformance is the overarching drive for healing in AEDP and provide an overview of the set of essential skills that will allow for the three state transformations in four different neuropsychological states.

Dan Hughes will discuss how AEDP compliments DDP and can add to our work with parents, teens and children using clinical vignettes to illustrate the convergence of the two models.

Jon Baylin, using the clinical examples shown by Danny and Dan will guide us through what is happening in the clients’ neurobiology, how the therapist invites a shift in the polyvagal system from defense to social engagement and how this shift then can lead to a greater ability to be mindful and to have the capacity for compassion towards self and others.

The afternoon will conclude with broader discussion of how AEDP, DDP, mindfulness practice and other models that focus on co-regulation before self-regulation can lead to the development of mental health in our clients.

This is an exciting opportunity to have skilled clinicians illustrate the importance of attachment theory, intersubjectivity and knowledge of interpersonal neurobiology principles for the promotion of well-being in our relationships with our clients, children and friends.

Danny Yeung MD CCFP CGPP FCFP, Chair of International Development and Senior Faculty of the AEDP Institute, is a trainer and supervisor of Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy (AEDP) for post-graduate mental health professionals in Hong Kong, China, and Canada. An Assistant Professor with the Department of Psychiatry in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto, Danny also serves as a Consultant Physician / Psychotherapist of Assertive Community Treatment Team and Mental Health Court Support Program for the Department of Psychiatry of Mount Sinai Hospital.

His unique contribution as a family doctor and a psychotherapist in the ACT Team, unparalleled globally, was instrumental in helping his team to win the American Psychiatric Foundation Advancing Minority Mental Health Award in 2007 and the Leading Practices Award presented by Ontario Hospital Association in 2007. He was also personally honored with the Joel Sadavoy Community Mental Health Award for 2011, Award of Excellence from the College of Family Physicians of Canada for 2012 and Peter R. Newman Humanitarian Award for 2013.

Dan Hughes, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist with a limited practice in South Portland, Maine. He founded and developed Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy (DDP), the treatment of children who have experienced abuse and neglect and who demonstrate ongoing problems related to attachment and trauma.

He has spent over 40 years helping children and youth reach their full potential and reconnect with others in their lives. Dan has conducted seminars, workshops, spoken at conferences and guest lectured throughout the US, Europe, Canada, and Australia over the past 18 years. He is also engaged in extensive training and supervision in the certification of therapists in his treatment model, along with ongoing consultation to various agencies and professionals.

He has written and co-authored numerous books and been featured in many articles. He and Jon Baylin have co-authored Brain Based Parenting (2012) and the Neurobiology of Attachment (2016).

Dr. Baylin received his doctorate in clinical psychology from Peabody College of Vanderbilt University in 1981. He has been working in the mental health field for 35 years. For the past twenty years, while continuing his clinical practice, he has immersed himself in the study of neuroscience and in teaching mental health practitioners about the brain, giving numerous workshops for mental health professionals on “Putting the Brain in Therapy.”

Several years ago, Dr. Baylin began a collaborative relationship with Daniel Hughes, a leader in the field of attachment-focused therapy. Their books, Brain Based Parenting (2012) and The Neurobiology of Attachment-focused Therapy (2016) are both in the Norton series on Interpersonal Neurobiology. Dr. Baylin is also the coauthor with Petra Winnette of Working with Traumatic Memories to Heal Adults with Unresolved Childhood Trauma (2016), Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

Dr. Baylin has been presenting internationally for several years and has delivered keynote sessions at conferences both abroad and in the USA. In 2016, he received a lifetime achievement award from ATTACh.

The George Hull Centre has experienced a significant number of referrals for complex, hard to serve children and their families. Behavioural, emotional and cognitive symptoms may suggest a particular disorder as defined by the DSM-5, but may also be more directly a function of trauma, multiple losses and attachment disruptions. Traditional evidence based programs and psychopharmacological treatment were not providing the relief of symptoms needed. In this presentation, Leticia Gracia, M.S.W. and Taylor Armstrong, M.D., F.R.C.P.C. will discuss how The George Hull Center improved the quality of treatment for these families by implementing Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy and Nurturing Attachments parent group program after receiving the Centre of Excellence’s $100,000 People Advancing Change Through Evidence grant. They will discuss the evolution of this initiative as well as providing preliminary data from their program evaluation that illustrates increased parental sensitivity and competence as well as the child’s increased sense of security, whether in a foster, adoptive or biological family.

A video clip of the DDP intervention and videotaped feedback from parents who have participated in the Nurturing Attachment programs will be presented. Dr. Taylor Armstrong, the center’s child and adolescent psychiatrist will also discuss his thoughts about traditional psychiatry and psychopharmacology in the treatment of developmental trauma.

Leticia Gracia, M.S.W., R.S.W. L is the Director of the Community Clinic at the George Hull Centre, a community based teaching and training children’s mental health centre. She has 22 years experience working with children and families in children’s mental health. She has specialized training in delivering Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy, cognitive behavioural therapy, family therapy, trauma assessment, and trauma treatment.

She has been part of numerous tables and organizations working to increase knowledge of developmental trauma and advocate for appropriate services for children who are affected. Leticia has been an active lead in the bringing Developmental Psychotherapy to the centre and is currently pursuing certification in the model.

Taylor Armstrong, M.D., F.R.C.P.C., is a staff child and adolescent psychiatrist at The George Hull Centre. He attended medical school and completed his residency in psychiatry at the University of Toronto. As an assistant professor with the University of Toronto, within the Department of Psychiatry, Dr. Armstrong serves as a primary supervisor for residents training at the Centre, as well as the site coordinator for Undergraduate and Postgraduate Education.

Clinically, Dr. Armstrong provides assessment and treatment for children and adolescents of a wide age range, and he has special interests in neurodevelopmental disorders, the role of schools in improving the mental health of their students, and attachment theory as applied to understanding children and youth and effective treatments. Dr. Armstrong is currently completing training in Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy.

The Intersection of DDP & AEDP: Parent Sessions During an Intensive Family Treatment

This year’s DDP conference Keynote speaker, Danny Yeung, MD, a senior AEDP faculty member, raises interesting questions about the ways that Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy (DDP) and Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy influence each other. In this presentation, Courtney Rennicke, Ph.D., a Certified DDP Trainer and Level III AEDP Practitioner, and Leah Langsam, Psy.D., a DDP Consultant in Training and Level I AEDP Practitioner, explore the ways that DDP and AEDP intersect, overlap, and inform each other when working with the attachment histories of adoptive parents. Video clips from psychotherapy sessions will be used to illustrate AEDP and DDP at work together in these family therapy sessions.

Courtney Rennicke, Ph.D. is a Columbia University trained Clinical Psychologist who runs a psychotherapy group practice, Rennicke & Associates, focusing on relationally-based and innovative psychotherapy for children and adults in New York City. Dr. Rennicke and her clinical staff specialize in providing attachment-focused family treatment to adoptive and foster care children and their families. Dr. Rennicke is also the Co-Founder and President to the Adoption Foster Care Therapist Network, a collective of mental health professionals specializing in attachment disorders in adoptive and foster care children and their families throughout New York State.

In addition to certification in Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy as a Practitioner, Consultant, and Trainer, Dr. Rennicke serves as the Board Member at Large for the United States and Treasurer for the board of the Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy Institute. Dr. Rennicke has also received advanced training in Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy (AEDP) for relational and attachment work with adults, as well as Collaborative Problem Solving for emotional dysregulation and behavioral issues with children and adolescents. Dr. Rennicke has supervised and taught clinical psychology externs, clinical social workers, post-doctoral fellows and psychiatry PGY-III residents in a range of treatment modalities at New York University Medical Center/Bellevue Hospital, Teachers College/Columbia University, and Yeshiva University.

Leah Langsam, PsyD is a DDP certified clinician working towards becoming a consultant. In addition, Dr. Langsam is the Director of Adoptive Family Services at Rennicke & Associates in New York City. Dr. Langsam offers and coordinates services throughout the adoption process, including family intensives utilizing attachment focused family treatment models to create a safe base from which families heal and thrive.

Dr. Langsam is also the Communications Director of the Adoption/Foster Care Therapist Network, an organization whose mission is to enhance the training of attachment-focused mental health professionals.

Children who have experienced chronic stress from adverse childhood experiences really struggle to develop a healthy brain. They come to school and unfortunately are poorly understood or served by our current education models. Our school’s business is to impart knowledge and learning skills. Unfortunately, for children who have experienced chronic stress and adverse childhood experiences their brains do not have the luxury of operating smoothly at a cortical level. These children are typically driven by their sympathetic nervous system that keeps them at high alert for danger and any possible vulnerability. Alternatively they are in a parasympathetic, dissociative state. Neither state is compatible with learning. School, learning, peers, teachers can all represent danger to a child who has experienced an ongoing toxic level of stress . Because fear remains high and emotion regulation is poor, these children, not surprisingly, present with challenging behaviour. Physical aggression, verbal aggression, stealing, lying, social difficulties, defiance, attention difficulties, inability to learn from consequences, lack of remorse are all common to children who have not had the luxury of developing healthy brains.

Limestone District School Board have committed to developing trauma informed schools in three elementary schools that services families with complex needs. Staff from these schools will describe their experience of having staff trained to use PACE and DDP principles, the impact on the school climate, student and teacher experiences and share their commitment to place relationships at the centre of helping students settle to learn and the struggle to change typical classroom management skills that are consequence driven and may involve multiple suspensions.

Limestone District School Board in conjunction with Algonquin and Lakeshore District School Board and Family and Children’s Services of Frontenac Lennox & Addington have partnered to create a section 21 classroom for students with attachment and trauma difficulties. This classroom, Belong, is now entering its 5th year and has had remarkable success helping students who did not manage a typical classroom environment given challenging behaviours return to their home school with better emotion regulation skills, greater trust of adult relationships and markedly improved learning abilities. This program has as its emphasis the creating of an emotionally safe environment for students and their parents and stresses co-regulation before self-regulation and dependence before independence. This program is described along with current research.

Whether you are an educational professional or a therapist, supporting our children in the school environment is a critical component of improving mental health. This presentation will discuss the process of developing these two programs and the need to support the teachers who work with children who have experienced trauma.

Sian Phillips is a psychologist in private practice in Kingston. She received her Ph.D. from University of Toronto in 1996 and has been working with children and families in Kingston since that time. She specializes in the assessment of trauma and attachment difficulties and works with children, foster parents and adoptive parents using Daniel Hughes model of Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy ®©. This exciting way of working helps the parent understand what lies behind difficult behaviour and to provide a safe, empathic relationship in which the child can begin to explore traumatic, hurtful and shameful experiences and importantly learn to experience themselves differently.

Sian is a certified DDP therapist, consultant and trainer. She is also an adjunct professor at Queens, supervising students in their clinical placements.

Deni Melim is an elementary teacher in Kingston, Ontario (primary/junior/intermediate qualifications). She received her Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from Queen's University, Bachelor of Education from the University of Windsor and Master of Education from Queen's University. She began as a primary classroom teacher and quickly transitioned into special education working with students with a variety of exceptionalities. She then moved to a consulting position at the Algonquin and Lakeshore CDSB intensively supporting staff and administration working with students on the autism spectrum as well as students with developmental disabilities. Part of this role included working closely with community partners to successfully transition students with exceptionalities to school for the first time.

Deni is starting her fifth year as the teacher in the Belong class using the PACE© model to support students with relational trauma.

Michael Blackburn is currently the Principal of Molly Brant Elementary School in the North End of Kingston. Last year he opened Kingston's newest elementary school serving 460 students in grades K - 8. He has been an educator for the past 17 years, and a school administrator for the past 11 years. Michael has devoted the last 5 years of his career to working in inner city schools and supporting students and families living in poverty and who have experienced significant trauma. Michael is a champion of public education and an advocate of equity and inclusion for all.

Other workshops with details to follow are:

  • Dan Hughes details supervision process of the DDP Therapist
  • Technology and Attachment
  • 'Experiential' workshop

Registration is now open. Our full schedule will be available in June 2017. We look forward to having you join us at the wonderful Donald Gordon Center.

Register Now


Donald Gordon Conference Centre
421 Union St W, Kingston, ON K7L 3N6

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