This 9-week healing workshop is geared towards those who have been impacted by violence, caused harm, enabled harm, and those who find themselves in cycles of physical and emotional harm who want to explore their participation in such cycles. Our work as facilitators engages our first-hand experiences in being impacted by harm as people who have caused, enabled, and survived it.
  • We provide a safe, compassionate, and structured space to address and heal what enables and gives rise to acts of harm.
  • We utilize somatic healing arts which address how the body, impacted by violence, records that violence, and externalizes it onto others and onto the self.
  • We utilize creative arts to get around our logical exterior and guide ourselves to act, move, and respond from the heart.
  • We interrogate the notion that vulnerability is a state of weakness, and remember it as a source of powerful strength.
  • Individual journaling, paired and group work, movement, visual art, reflective homework, and psycho- / political- education are some of the tools we will use throughout this journey.
  • This is a confidential and consensual group. While participants will be supported through risk-taking, participants will share according to their needs for safety.
  • Our facilitators are not mandated reporters and are not legally required to report acts of harm to authorities. 

Applications for our BIPOC Cohort exceeded our capacity by about 2x!!


We are gearing up for another cohort (Fall 2020) to roll over some of our applicants. This speaks to the urgent need for this work.


We need your help in making this work accessible to vulnerable and targeted populations. Please contribute to our fundraiser here!

Wondering if this is the right experience for you?

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Co Facilitators and Curriculum Developers





Rosa Cabrera

Facilitator and Curriculum Developer

A Harlem native, born to Dominican parents, and a single mami living in Oakland, CA. Her published works online and in print explore motherhood, sexuality, Black feminism, and survivorship. In 2017, she founded Reclaiming Our Own Transcendence to increase communities’ healing capacity. Her previous work as a rape crisis counselor and her own personal experiences healing from domestic violence, sexual violence, and intimate partner violence while attempting to love informs her teaching, writing, and healing work. She holds an MFA in Creative Nonfiction Writing from Mills College, MS in English Education from University of Rochester as an Urban Teaching Leadership Fellow, and a BA in Black and Latino Urban Studies from San Francisco State University. She has taught English in New York City and Oakland high schools for a total of 5 years. Currently she teaches English at Chabot College and founded InkRise, a writing workshop for survivors of violence in 2012.

Amy Paulson

Curriculum Developer

Left eBay Europe in 2011 to co-found Gratitude Alliance after 14 years of working in finance, operations, project management, accounting/tax in the U.S. and Europe for Deloitte, SAP, eBay, and the US Embassy in Berlin.


Once an orphan herself, Amy is passionate about creating spaces for healing and transformation for children who have lost their mothers and for trauma survivors who most need to reclaim their inner mother.  She's served in the non-profit sector as a volunteer, international program manager, finance manager, and board member focusing on projects benefiting orphaned and vulnerable children in the US and abroad.


Based in San Francisco, Amy serves as CEO at Gratitude Alliance where she also facilitates community education workshops and healing circles. She holds a Master of Science in Nonprofit Management with a concentration in Global Studies from Northeastern University and a certificate in Trauma-Informed Interventions (UC Berkeley). Back in the day, Amy earned her BS in Business/Accounting and is a licensed CPA (inactive) in California.


Amy is also working on her first book, The Wound Myth, about her journey as a transracial, transnational adoptee, reuniting with her birth parents, and learning to embrace gratitude as a powerful catalyst for change.











Antone  Olivier

Facilitator and Curriculum Developer 

A native of  the San Francisco Bay Area, he received a BFA  in fine art painting from UC Berkeley, and completed post graduate studies with curricular emphasis on the performing arts of theatre and music at CSU East Bay.  He has enjoyed a 42 year career of teaching visual and performing arts, primarily at Saint Mary’s College High School in Berkeley, California, and being the Artistic Director for 60+ theatrical productions.  In addition, he has developed and directed multiple performance programs for many schools and community organizations throughout the East Bay with the Theatrical Directors for the City of Oakland Dramatic Arts program, through the Oakland Parks and Recreation Department for a total of 10 years since 1980.  As a performer he is a recipient of a Bay Area Theatre Critic’s Circle Award for acting, and a National College Theatre Award winner as Performer, Musical Director, and Composer of Original Music for a production of “OEDIPUS REX,”performed at the Kennedy Center for the Arts in Washington D.C.














Sal Tran


Sal Tran is a queer Vietnamese filmmaker and touring speaker based in the San Francisco Bay Area. They are one of the co-founders of SunKissed Productions - an independent queer Asian film collective. Sal’s work is rooted within the power of storytelling in film, visual and performative art. They focus on mental health advocacy work within queer trans Asian Pacific Islander (QTAPI) communities. Their work has been featured in UC Berkeley's Queer & Asian Conference, National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI), Seattle Transgender Film Festival, National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance (NQAPIA) Conference, NYC Queer Asian Short Films, As[I]Am Magazine, UC Santa Barbara - Queer Trans People of Color Conference and many more.

Vic Aguirre



Vic Aguirre is a CA Certified Massage Therapist and Health Educator serving the SF Bay Area for the last 6 years. Their mission is to prioritize the empowerment of Queer Trans and POC’s reclamation of their bodies by sharing knowledge and experiences in anatomy, physiology and the effects of living within systems and cycles of violence as an individual with intersectional identities.


 Session One: Safety and Identity

Exploring Our Edges Around Self-awareness 

Setting Commitments

Developing Cohesion + Models for Communicating


Session Two: Strength Building

​Locating our Resilience

Exploring Somatic Memory

Uncovering Wisdom Latent in Emotional Discomfort


Session Three: Speaking to the Wound

Exploring our Protective Responses

Exploring the Impact of Trauma on Self + Community

Deepening Tools for Generative Dialoging with Discomfort

Session Four: Cycles of Harm

Embodying Compassion in the Face of Real + Perceived Threat

Examining Intergenerational Responses to Harm

Observing Our Cycles of Inner and Outer Harm

Exploring Our Relationship to a Culture of Violence

Session Five: Healing

Complicating Our Relationship to Trauma

Softening Our Attachments to Harm

Inscribing New Healing Patterns Into Our Bodies

Session Six: Compassion, Acceptance, Accountability

Defining Self, Interpersonal, and Community Accountability

Compassion: A Key Ingredient in Effective Accountability Work

Emotional First Aid + Self Regulation In the Face of Conflict


Session Seven: Values, Intentions,  Commitments

Fortifying Our Commitment to Self-Accountability and Healing

Setting the Conditions for Continued Growth

Calling Up Our Internal and External Resources

Session Eight: Gratitude, Reflections


Charting of Progress

Observing Ingredients of Collective Healing Work

Session Nine: Building Forward, Closing Ceremony

Envisioning and Building a Forward Movement

Taking and Letting Go


Participant Blurbs

"RooT Healing Cycles of Harm circles offered me a sense of hope and clarity around how I can change the patterns of harm I’ve been repeating." (2019)

"Attending Healing Cycle of Harm introduced me to a different way of living. I realized how triggers carried out actions which hurt no one but me. This work has allowed me to understand the cause, accept, and overcome my depression, addiction, anxiety, and discomfort as I can now transform it into true happiness..." (2019)

"Epic. I've been talking about it non-stop. What a revelation to learn what my sadness wants, what my anger wants, the point of a resourcing practice... This has impacted me and my approach to my work as a sexual violence crisis counselor." (2020)

"I feel like it offers practices for people to return to again and again. It supports a healing culture and culture of healing right where you're at. In this way if more people participated in this it would spread these practices and create a community of people who are practiced in these techniques." (2020)

"I felt so much and so changed and better in touch with my healing journey, my body, my trauma. I have been recommending it to all healing seekers that I know who seem ready and interested." (2020)

Special Thanks


Warm thanks to:


Homies Empowerment, 

Roots Community Health Center

for donating physical spaces.

Warm thanks to Northern California No Tax Resistance for support through the People's Life Fund for our Spring 2019 Workshop.

Also, warm thanks to Gratitude Alliance for breathing life into and offering material support to this important work.

Thanks to Oakland Unite and the city of Oakland for supporting a powerhouse cohort of trainees for our Spring 2020 session!

2EcuI32MSkCBDfxopWDQ_Homies Empowerment

Releasing attachments to abuse.

Regenerating communities. 

Reclaiming Our Own Transcendence.