“When the Intentional Creativity™ Method was founded, it was with the hope that the process would be able help transform and heal trauma through self expression. Our focus was on women and their families at first, then moved into a desire to teach the teachers so this work could spread into the places it was the most needed. I am delighted to see Rachel teach this in the realms I always envisioned the work going–to heal the healers and youth exposed to violence and neglect and lack of a positive self image. As a teacher, Rachel brings a depth of knowledge from her work as a child welfare lawyer along with her sparkle, sense of play, and deep love for those she works with.
I have had the privilege of sitting in on one of Rachel’s classes and was truly impressed and inspired and brought to tears at the way she had developed the method, and the message to work directly with those who serve others. In a world where negative violence based media is often the driving force, it is essential for us to define the media for ourselves. In Rachel’s class, Healing the Healer, she is inviting both social workers as well as children in the justice system to define the media of their stories for themselves.” —Shiloh Sophia, Founder of Intentional Creativity™
“Secondary Trauma is an occupational hazard for child welfare workers who are exposed to survivors of traumatic events as part of their everyday work. Helping staff establish coping strategies can reduce staff burnout and turnover. Rachel Bavis’ “Healing The Healer” workshop offers child welfare social workers a therapeutic, interactive environment to address and develop such coping skills. As a deputy director for Children and Family Services, I believe Ms. Bavis has a unique approach- focusing on creativity and mindfulness to help staff develop tools to remain emotionally healthy. Her prior experience as an attorney working in the juvenile system gives her an empathic perspective in understanding the traumatic nature of the stressors in our work. I highly recommend this training opportunity as many of our staff have attended and returned to work with a renewed enthusiasm and passion for their work. Ms. Bavis is an outstanding and dynamic facilitator and her workshop is not to be missed!” –Dr. Joanne Munro, Deputy Director, OC Children and Family Services
“I feel I was able to heal secondary traumatic stress during the workshop by involving the physical, kinesthetic, and creative self completely and allowing the process to work. It provided a guided experience by silencing the inner critics we all have and allowed us to embrace positive change through experiencing creativity rather than simply talking about it. Very healing, renewing, and positive experience. Thank you!” –T.F., social worker/Administrative Manager
“I just wanted to let you know that I absolutely loved your workshop and am eternally grateful for you and the gift you have given me. That one-day has completely changed my approach and perspective at work and in the rest of my life. Taking care of and nurturing myself has become a priority, not only in my work life, but in my personal life as well, and I am having such a better time because of it. So thank you again, from the bottom of my heart. I was not in a good place back in November, and I honestly don’t know that I would still be in child welfare right now if I hadn’t had the wonderful opportunity to participate in the Heal the Healer workshop. I wish all my colleagues could experience it too.” –K.D., social worker
“As social workers, we value the lives of families and child safety is our goal. But as humans, we too have emotions that are triggered by the crisis and dynamics of the families we work with. We should be required to process and heal physically and mentally as part of the job to ensure we continue to carry out child safety to the best of our abilities.” — A.C., social worker
“I really appreciate my agency bringing this workshop to people who need it. It demonstrates caring for our mental health and well-being in a field that can take so much from you.” –C.G., social worker
“I am a psychologist with expertise in trauma treatment and have observed the tremendous impact of secondary traumatic stress, giving a lot of thought to how it is best addressed. I am impressed with the way Ms. Bavis addresses STS her “Healing the Healer” training for a number of reasons. One of the main things is that she provides an avenue for addressing secondary trauma that is experiential and addresses it at an emotional level, rather than just cognitively, which is how it is addressed in most trainings. This mirrors what is also true about treatment of direct trauma. … Rachel’s training focuses participants’ on positive, healing, compassionate emotions and the whole training is set up so that it relaxes the nervous system and increases the ability to focus. This contributes to the training being solution focused and positive. It helps people get in touch with and honor the reasons they went into the helping professions. My observation is that the workshop Rachel has developed is unique and powerful in it’s ability to help child welfare workers, and others in the helping professions, to reduce the impact of secondary traumatic stress and increase their level of energy and commitment.”–Holly Magaña, PhD, psychologist
“This was actually really a new experience. I enjoyed myself. This is an art class that will help you express yourself, for who you are.” –C.
“It was fun, colorful and cool!” – L.
“This was fun, creative and exciting. This helped me release stress and escape from everything.” –J.
“This was fun, different, entertaining…You’ll really enjoy it even if you can’t draw.” – L.
“I would do this again because I draw my energy. The three words I would use to describe this class: fun creative and interesting.” –S.
“This is an excellent workshop for relaxation and awakening one’s creative spirit. Fun and empowering!” –Wendy E., teacher, Riverside, CA
“Even though I haven’t painted before and I can’t draw, Rachel and Jennifer created a safe space and provided the kind of gentle guidance that I needed to really enjoy the process of creating and expressing. The work they are passionate about facilitating allowed me to leave self-consciousness at the door and plunge into that kind of happy absorved concentration that kids have when they are playing. It felt really good to explore a new way of connecting with myself and getting out of my head. “ –Laia Pedreno, psychotherapist, Alameda, CA
“I came into this workshop knowing my artistic skills were very basic…stick figure basic. Yet Rachel helped me create a picture that I am proud of. It was a very supportive and non-threatening experience. I highly recommend it.” –Doreen Ramsey, teacher, Riverside, CA
“Rachel and [co-teacher] Jennifer Bowers are wonderful teachers who create a workshop environment filled with nourishment, kindness, acceptance, and fun! Their teaching style is warm and inviting which makes it easy for those of us who don’t paint very often to feel safe and able to dive right in, make mistakes, seek out support and to enjoy the process. I am so glad I was able to take a workshop with them because I walked away with much more than just a painting; In just one day’s time, I walked away feeling reconnected to my inner artist and nourished by time spent in a circle of creative, kind women. I wholeheartedly recommend taking a workshop with Rachel and Jennifer, especially if it’s been some time since you last created. Their kindness, warmth, and skill as teachers will delight and inspire you.” –Annie W, psychotherapist, Berkeley, CA
“I loved the invitation to explore without concern with how my creation looked. Rachel made it fun and easy. I would recommend this to anyone who is curious about their creative process.” — Sandy Miller, gratefully retired attorney
“I loved the whole process … the permission to follow my creativity and inspiration and the feeling that what I was doing could benefit more than just myself.” –Sally Sumida, art historian
“The workshop was creative, colorful, and freeing. Rachel has a gift for bringing creative expression out from the depths. Rachel rocks!”—Nancy Worcester
“I want to do this particular workshop again! (Or any other workshop facilitated by Rachel!) I loved the guided imagery that helped facilitate the open, supported mood of the day. I loved and appreciated the care that was evident by having all the tools set up for us. I loved the exercise. I highly recommend Rachel’s offering – especially for the helping professionals. We give so much – it felt delicious to receive, be held and encouraged by her gentle guidance. Thank you!” –Teresa L., psychologist
“Rachel’s Staff Retreat for Tribal Ground was well thought out – the perfect balance between instruction and freedom. It was low pressure, high support. Great music! Great teacher! A multi-leveled experience—part shamanism-part painting. Fun!” –Chris Price, Tribal Ground co-founder, Aptos, CA
“Rachel’s class is nurturing, inspiring and fun. Her loving, caring and strong presence, combined with her knowledge, skills and humor made this day very special for me.” –Michal I., Tribal Ground Assistant, Aptos, CA
“Rachel is an excellent teacher and her passion for this work shines through in her instruction and the way she facilitated us through this process. Our staff retreat was a fun, creative day to dive into painting and connect to my muse\soul\guide\wise woman\playful child.” –Dorothy Charles, Tribal Ground co-founder, Aptos, CA
“Rachel creates a safe, soothing and nurturing space that invites creativity, connection and growth. I felt so held and taken care of and was able to tap into parts of myself I would not have been able to reach on my own.” –Rudi Price-Waldrip, Tribal Ground Administrator, Gestalt Awareness Practice (GAP) student