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2022 Trauma & Recovery Conference: CT Women’s Consortium

Ally Kernan, Peer Support Specialist, hosting a booth

We were able to have a booth at the 2022 Trauma & Recovery Conference through the CT Women’s Consortium. I was able to host the booth, as well as attend sessions!

Every year I attend this conference and leave feeling validated, intrigued, and motivated. I will be posting additional posts on specifics that I learned from the conference. This entire conference is about trauma, the recovery of it, and the many pathways of support that are available. My favorite part of the conference was that the CT Women’s Consortium had several speakers that were people with lived experience. Often times, at big and fancy conferences like these, lived experience speakers are put on panels or breakout sessions. Although that is great, when the keynote speaker and the opening remarks are done by lived experience speakers, I feel more connected to the conference. I also feel as if the conference host truly cares about the people that are being served, rather than having a fancy celebrity or expensive unrelatable speaker come.

At this conference, I learned about Restorative Justice, how trauma effects the nervous system, generational trauma regarding epigenetics, and Intimate Partner Violence. Although I’ve had familiarity on these topics, this year they brought presenters that went more into depth of what I had already known. I’ll be looking forward to sharing the details of these topics with you all!

Lastly, I had the humbling opportunity to speak about a person the conference was honoring. Dr. Charles Atkins had passed away not too long ago and he was an incredible provider in CT. He taught courses and workshops, lead several committees, was an amazing public speaker, an author, and a wonderful mentor. I had the blessing of being mentored by him for 5 years. He even featured my story in one of his books. Going up on stage in front of the whole conference attendees to share words about him was healing for me, but also heartbreaking. I hadn’t spoke about his death and really hadn’t processed it fully. I had been burying the tears and keeping a smile, although I know he would’ve wanted me to process it. I didn’t expect to completely start bawling on stage. I have never struggled to compose myself during public speaking until this moment. I’ve done over 1,000 public speaking events to this day, yet this one was so different. I’m grateful for the consortium to allow me to share my thoughts and I can now speak about him completely composed. Thank you, Colette, for allowing my words.

Whenever you have an opportunity to attend conferences and trainings, take advantage of it. Put your phone and laptop away and actually pay attention. Don’t skip out early or use it as an excuse to only socialize. Learn what is being taught because you never know what you will end up learning about your work and yourself.

-Ally Kernan

trauma and recovery conference

2 Replies to “2022 Trauma & Recovery Conference: CT Women’s Consortium”

  1. It was so nice to read your thoughts and feeling about the conference. It means a lot to me.

  2. Kailey MarcAurele says:

    I love that this is a thing right here in Connecticut!! I’m hoping to make it one of these years 🙂

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