Workshop "C" descriptions

Adult participants will be asked to select one session from the Workshop "C" Time Slot during the registration process.

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12 Steps to Bridging – Communicating With Spirit (C1)

 Speaker: Andrea Courey

Workshop Description:

We can learn to communicate directly with spirit!

This is a participatory, hands-on workshop to help release doubt and give participants tools to develop their own abilities to communicate directly with spirit.

One of the biggest obstacles to communicating with spirit is our own doubt. This workshop helps you remove that doubt and gives concrete steps to build confidence and your own personal practice. The 12 steps are clearly laid out and form the basis of a skill set that can be learned, practised and refined.

All materials will be provided and a short sound meditation will conclude the 75-minute workshop.

About Andrea Courey:

This workshop is based on channeled material I received from my daughter, Chloe, who passed into spirit in 2016. I want to share the information I received so that others can benefit from this step-by-step process and have the great personal joy of engaging in dialogue with their loved ones across the veil.


Mindful Grieving: Advancing Through Grief with Mindfulness (C2)

Speaker: Rebecca Ross

Workshop Description:

Mindfulness meditation is often suggested by therapists and doctors for individuals experiencing grief and loss, but how can we be in the moment when our current moment is unbearable? In fact, many yoga and meditation classes and workshops are not designed to be grief and trauma-friendly and can have adverse effects on participants. Through a trauma-informed lens, this workshop approaches grief through mindfulness and teaches participants how to be with strong emotions and sensations without being overwhelmed or swept away by them.

The objective of this workshop is to introduce mindfulness meditation for grief through a trauma-informed lens, making these essential practices safe and approachable for all experiencing grief and loss. This workshop would also be appropriate for therapists and counselors who recommend mindfulness approaches for grief and loss. The skills taught will include:

  • gaining an understanding of the foundational attitudes of mindfulness and mindful breathing techniques;
  • developing an awareness and learning techniques to manage the physical symptoms of grief and loss;
  • developing increased compassion (towards self and others).

In this workshop, you will be taught mindfulness meditation techniques in ways that are trauma-sensitive and safe for those experiencing grief and loss. You will develop mindfulness skills that can support you throughout your grief journey, in whatever shape it takes and for however long you are on the journey.

During the workshop, key techniques will be outlined and practised, giving you the opportunity to experience the mindfulness meditation in a safe environment and to ask questions based on their own inner experience. The workshop will also include light stretching and mindful movement.

About Rebecca Ross:

As a meditation teacher, I’ve been offering mindful grieving workshops and community drop-in classes for the last year and a half. I strongly believe that meditation and yoga are essential tools to support grief and loss, but, often mainstream yoga and meditation approaches further alienate those experiencing grief and loss. It is my goal to offer these practices in a grief and trauma-sensitive way, allowing individuals experiencing to be together in an experiential, in the moment way. As an individual bereaved due to suicide, these practices have been instrumental in my life and it is an honour to offer them to others who are bereaved. 


Expressive Arts for Grief Workshop (C3)

Speakers: Margaret (Lorrie) Beaton & Andrea Steinwand, Bereaved Families of Ontario – Ottawa Chapter

Workshop Description:

In this interactive and experiential workshop, participants will gain a better understanding of the use of expressive arts within grief work. Art making has the power to tap into non-verbal creative processes in the brain that are necessary for psychological transformation and it has the potential to offer a process for reflection, insight, meaning-making, and healing.

This workshop is suitable for those who are actively grieving, as well as those who work in the field of bereavement. The workshop will include a presentation, a reflection-discussion with a question and answer session and an experiential Rosebush visualization exercise. The objectives are to help participants to:

  • understand the impact of grief;
  • learn ways to use art as a vehicle for processing emotions;
  • develop strategies for self-care and healing;
  • help empower individuals of all ages to reconnect with their inner world and the emotions that are attached to their grief.

About Speakers from Bereaved Families of Ontario:

Margaret (Lorrie) Beaton, Program Director and Andrea Steinwand, Art Therapy Practicum Student from Bereaved Families of Ontario- Ottawa Region are pleased to have the opportunity to share the ability to combine the arts in grief work.


Traversing the Sea of Loss: Shamanic Ceremonies and Processes that Aid Working Through Grief (C4)

Panel Members: Kathleen Leeson RH, Shamanic Healer & Clinical Herbalist; Debbie Charbonneau, Shaman & Death Doula; Carrie Fawcett, Ceremonialist; Michele Bougie, Shaman & Panel Facilitator;

Christiane Zeithamel, Death Doula 

Workshop Description:

Change and Transition in the Shamanic Tradition, are normal experiences and happen regularly in our lives. The emotional response of grief is one of these experiences. At some point in our lives, we will all face Change through the loss of a loved one and this brings a quality of heartache that can be much more difficult to work through. In the Shamanic Tradition, our Wisdom teaches us that experiencing significant loss can create an opportunity to ‘plumb our depths’. But how do we do so without getting caught in the undertow? And if caught, what can we then do?

How we experience this change/loss and how it then alters us, can be unique to the individual involved. There are, however, some recurring and common patterns to bereavement for which a variety of time-honoured Shamanic Ceremonies and Processes have been developed and offered to aid the individual who is suffering.

On this panel will be skilled, educated Shamanic Healers, Death Doulas and Ceremonialists who have decades of experience in the art of navigating the Waters of Consciousness: freeing ourselves from the depths of sorrow, plotting a course, and eventually sailing across to shore. These experts are willing to share their own personal experiences of recovery and their knowledge in hopes that it may be of use to those in need.

This session is simply to give people an opportunity to discover these complementary healing processes and answer any questions about this time-honoured tradition. There are a variety of ways that Shamanism can change the grieving experience for the better and a panel discussion is the perfect place to have this discussion.

About Speakers:

Kathleen Leeson RH, Shamanic Healer & Clinical Herbalist

Debbie Charbonneau, Shaman & Death Doula,

Carrie Fawcett, Ceremonialist

Michele Bougie, Shaman & Panel Facilitator

Christiane Zeithamel, Death Doula 


What about the Siblings? – A Panel Discussion with Bereaved Adult Siblings (C5)

 Speaker: Barb Juett, Bereavement Social Worker

Panel Members: Scott Markovic, Julia St-Jean, and others to be confirmed

Workshop Description:

“To the outside world we all grow old. But not to brothers and sisters. We know each other as we always were. We know each other’s hearts. We share private family jokes. We remember family feuds and secrets, family griefs and joys. We live outside the touch of time.”  Clara Ortega

The relationship that people share with their siblings is potentially the longest one they will ever have. As a result, when a sibling dies, the grief experienced is very unique. When a parent dies, you lose the past. When a child dies, you lose the future. When a sibling dies, you lose both the past and the future. In many ways, siblings often experience a double loss: the loss of their brother or sister but also the loss of their parents (at least for a time) as they are so consumed by their own grief that they may seek their own retreat in managing their emotions.

In this workshop, you will hear from a panel of bereaved adult siblings who will share their experiences and insights about what has been most helpful, and, how they have found meaning in their healing. Through discussion with the panel, you will gain a better understanding of the unique grief needs and issues facing siblings, and you will learn the most helpful strategies to support bereaved siblings.

About Barb Juett:

There does not seem to be a great deal available when it comes to supports for bereaved adult siblings. As a bereavement social worker, I believe that our society has still so much to learn when it comes to knowing how to offer effective support. 

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