2015 WMR Annual Conference: A Celebration of Recovery!
This year's WMR Annual Conference: Share the Experience was a memorable event with over 130 people in attendance to celebrate recovery and engage in wellness experiences. This year's event started with the Pre-Conference on Sunday, May 31st with 10 people completing their certification in Aromatouch Therapy Technique with Susie Schiering. The special guests at this year's conference included:
Dr. Jaimie Marich who shared personal stories of healing and the importance of self care in the recovery process as well as self care for peers and providers who are serving others in the community. On Wednesday, June 3rd Dr. Marich and Alexis Rae led over 50 participants in a Mindful Dancing experience. Finally, Dr. Marich contributed to the Talent Show on Monday evening by entertaining us with her guitar and some of the crowd's most favorite songs.
Linda Haley, RMT, the founder of The Reiki Center: Center for Healing Arts in Columbus, OH provided participants with an introduction to Reiki as a therapeutic and healing modality. Throughout the conference Linda provided participants with Reiki massage which helped with balancing energy in the body and removing blockages. Many participants expressed gratitude for Linda's willingness to share and appreciated the opportunity to experience Reiki for the first time.
Karen Holmes, a decorated member of The National Guard, talked about her life before she knew she was transgender. She shared what she did to prepare herself for transition and the steps that made it successful with family, friends, her employers, and her volunteer organizations. Karen wishes to help non-transgender people understand what it means to be transgender (transsexual) and what they go through in life on a daily basis. Karen participated in the entire conference and is now proud to call the WMR Community her family.
Dr. Sharon Trekell, the Director of the Inner Well Institute led participants in a QiGong experience. Developed over millennia in Chinese monasteries, hospitals, and imperial courts, Qigong (pronounced Chee Gung) has been used to promote health, emotional healing, and spiritual development. Qigong combines movement, postural alignment, breath, and mental intention to balance and enhance a person’s vital life energy. Long kept a carefully guarded secret from the Chinese public, Qigong has now come to the West and is viewed as a health and human performance breakthrough as well as being an excellent tool for self-care. Research has found that Qigong initiates the relaxation response, enhances the efficiency of the immune system, improves resistance to disease, coordinates the right and left brain hemisphere dominance, and induces alpha and theta brain waves which help to reduce heart rate and blood pressure.
In addition to this year's special guests, there were 12 workshops on topics related to recovery, empowerment, self management and personal healing. Participants were also engaged in art, music, nature walks, meditation, community building, yoga, a labyrinth experience, and other fun activities (Bingo, corn hole, bonfire etc.). Participants commented that this is the best conference with the best people and 99% said they would recommend this conference to others!
Conference planning for the 2016 WMR Annual Conference has already begun! The next planning meeting is July 31st in Columbus. If you would like to be involved in the planning please contact Durrie Allen at firstname.lastname@example.org or Connie Contini at email@example.com.
2015 WMR Award Winners Announced
Congratulations to Angela Ostholthoff, the winner of the Zan Pesta: Light My Way Award and Choices Social Center in Akron Ohio, the winner of the WMR Recovery Award. Ms. Ostholthoff was nominated by Chris Pedoto of The Recovery Center of Hamilton County for her 9 years of leadership as a supervisor at the Recovery Center of Hamilton County. She has had a tremendous impact on peer services locally, statewide and nationally. Her accomplishments demonstrate that her leadership is exemplary, her advocacy efforts for recovery have contributed positively to peer programs, and her enthusiasm for recovery has led to enhanced wellness and personal growth for individuals served by those programs.
Choices, a Consumer Operated Service Agency began implementing WMR in 2010 and offered WMR groups as well as Coffee Talks for a number of years. Unfortunately, many of the staff and members who completed the original WMR Facilitator Workshop left the agency and were unavailable to offer groups. However, Choices' commitment to WMR did not wain. With support from the Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation, Choices received funding to revive WMR with 12 individuals completing the WMR Facilitator Workshop in April and is once again offering groups. Choices is recognized for their continued efforts to provide evidence-based recovery programming in their community and finding creative ways to engage their members in wellness activities.
WMR Leadership Institutes: Coming to a Location Near You!
During August and September, the WMR CCOE will be hosting a series of regional Leadership Institutes. These institutes will invite participants to learn about the history of the recovery movement and explore the relationship between empowerment, activism, and personal wellness. Participants will also be able to work in small groups to identify where recovery is working well in the community and how to create more opportunities for recovery. Participants will be able to share their ideas for continued growth and leadership in the community and collectively create an action plan. For more information about the Leadership Institutes and how to register, visit the website at www.wmrohio.org under events. Registration will open by the first of August.
The 12 Steps to Self Care
(From the Happiness Institute's Facebook Page)
- If it feels wrong, don't do it
- Say exactly what you mean
- Don't be a people pleaser
- Trust your instincts
- Never speak bad about yourself
- Never give up on your dreams
- Don't be afraid to say no
- Don't be afraid to say yes
- Be kind to yourself
- Let go of what you can't control
- Stay away from drama and negativity
Here's to your Health and Happiness!