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    The negative consequences of trauma (e.g., physical abuse) take a disproportionate toll on Black youth due to the compounding stress of unique race related stressors (e.g., witnessing police brutality in the media, microaggressions). This workshop provides an overview of interpersonal and racial trauma; presents research on systemic, organizational, client, and provider barriers and facilitators to mental health service utilization; and discusses strategies clinicians can PRACTICE (Psychoeducation, Relaxation, Affect identification and modulation, Cognitive restructuring, Trauma narrative, In-vivo exposure, Conjoint parent-child sessions, Enhancing safety) to integrate racial socialization into treatment to help Black clients heal from interpersonal and racial stress and trauma.


    At the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:


    1. Identify ways that interpersonal and racial stress and trauma impact development for Black Americans;
    2. Describe research on barriers and facilitators to service utilization for Black youth, families, and adults;
    3. Discuss the protective role of racial socialization on Black youths’ behavioral and mental health outcomes; 
    4. Contribute to multidisciplinary teams to make culturally informed decisions pertaining to engagement, assessment, and treatment of Black youth;
    5. Leverage their personal identity to build rapport and trust with youth and serve as an effective ally in the therapeutic space; and
    6. Utilize 2-3 applied strategies and resources for integrating racial socialization into clinical care in a culturally affirming and validating manner. 
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    1. How do you cover racial stressors in the first session for BIPOC clients, and how do we continue the conversation throughout treatment?
    2. How do you address unconscious implicit biases without impacting rapport and talk about racism with clients who do not believe systemic racism is happening?
    3. What makes an effective ally in the therapeutic space? How do white allies do our "work" (Without relying BIPOC clients to educate us), but ensure we make change?
    4. How can clinicians use self-disclosure to connect with BIPOC clients and manage racial injustice and/or microaggressions in the therapy space?
    5. How can BIPOC clinicians stay present in sessions and give themselves adequate self-care when they are also dealing with racial stressors of their own?
    6. What strategies are there for critically and clinically approaching discussions of power dynamics and privilege in therapeutic relationships (especially between white therapists and BIPOC clients)?
  • "Racism, without being discussed, is often the elephant in the room that plagues therapists, community organizations, corporations, individuals, and our society at large. My job as a consultant is to EMPOWER clients to face the elephant in the room and eradicate racism. Join me and together we will pick up a fork and a knife and learn the only way to eat an elephant-- one bite at a time."

    Dr. Isha Metzger

  • What participants are saying about Racial Trauma Training with Dr. Metzger

    I, personally, learned a lot from what you shared, and I feel confident that using your findings as a guide, we will be able to make some very positive changes for clients and providers in the areas of DE&I, hopefully not just now, but in the years to come. Thank you for being so thoughtful in your recommendations and for providing actionable feedback.

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger

    I learned a lot during the workshop and also REALLY appreciated how you guided our discussion, Q&A, and sharing your wisdom. One thing that I took away in particular, was the language that you gave us around noting a broken system and broken learning, different approaches to naming allyship, and the directness of labeling microaggressions or acts of racism, if my client experiences them. I think that level of directness is something I haven't known how to address exactly. Overall, it's really sparked my learning not only with my 1:1 clients, and also how to support coaches as providers too.

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger

    Thank you, again, for making the time to meet with [us] to present your findings to [our partners] today, and of course, for all of your work on the audit. I also want to thank you, not only for the knowledge and ideas you shared with us, but also for being you and making this leg of the journey so much fun!

    As [hidden] and I were sharing with [hidden] earlier today, it is not just that you are incredibly insightful and knowledgeable about DE&I and evidence-based therapies, but also that you are a lovely, energetic, and caring person, too.

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger

    One thing that I took away in particular, was the language that you gave us around noting a broken system and broken learning, different approaches to naming allyship, and the directness of labeling micro-aggressions or acts of racism, if my client experiences them. I think that level of directness is something I haven't known how to address exactly.

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger

    I learned so much! The greatest benefit of this workshop was that I had language to explain to a new client of color my role as an advocate, (hopeful) ally position, and that I am consciously working on reducing my unconscious bias. Without this presentation and discussion, I wouldn’t have been ready, but now I am!

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger

    This training was extremely helpful in allowing me to explore race-related challenges in my work and to learn about concrete strategies for validating client experiences and helping my clients who encounter racial stressors in their daily lives resist in ways that allow them to recharge, prevent or help treat symptoms of racial trauma, and ultimately enact social change.

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger

    Dr. Metzger is incredibly insightful and knowledgeable about DE&I and skilled in the culturally sensitive delivery of evidence-based therapies!

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger

    Excellent and timely topic. I enjoyed not only the application of the principles, but found it conceptually very useful to view the impact of racism from the lens of trauma. The latter was not something I had made explicit in mind until now.

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger

    Videos were great and powerfully illustrative. I think having a real person talking about their experiences was very effective capturing the problem rather than just presenting statistics, which we may already know to be true.

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger

    Feedback from the team is exceedingly positive regarding Dr. Metzger's work with us over the past couple weeks. They were already really excited about her research even before these workshops, and between her talent as a presenter, her ability to make it relatable to the team’s clinical work, and the vast array of resources she's provided, this will continue to play a major role in fueling discussions and informing our clinical work going forward.

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger

    Dr. Metzger was a very knowledgeable, incredibly engaging speaker who provided lots of helpful resources on a MUCH NEEDED didactic! My only critique is that I wish we could have her with us for more time, like 2 weeks maybe, because there is so much more we can cover that she touched on and I think is sorely needed in our training!

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger:

    This topic was so much appreciated and the way it was approached by blending personal experience with evidence and information from the literature and her research, applicable techniques and skills, and very natural modeling of the skills was very helpful. Thank you thank you thank you to Dr. Metzger for the important work you're doing! Wonderful presentation style. This was amazing!

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger:

    Dr. Metzger did a wonderful job using her program of research to provide practical ideas for how to tailor treatment while working with Black youth. In addition, I deeply appreciated her tips on how to be a better ally during these difficult times.

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger

    Her enthusiasm for involving undergraduates in research and service, and her insistence that our trainees consider the unique experience of under-represented and marginalized groups in all aspects of their research and practice are perfectly aligned with the goals of our department, and students have already benefited from this relationship!

    What clients are saying about consultation with Dr Metzger

    "Very well organized and professional presentation. Wonderful speaker. While some of what was presented caused me to want to get defensive, I chose to acknowledge my responses, stay and listen with an open mind, and figure out what pieces of what Dr. Metzger was talking about I could address from my position as an individual and professional. I am thankful for that opportunity!"

  • Recommended Authored Readings:

    1. Metzger, I., Anderson, R., Are, F., & Ritchwood, T (2020). Healing interpersonal and racial trauma: Integrating Racial Socialization into TF-CBT for African American Youth. Child Maltreatment, 2 6(1), 17-27.


    2. Metzger, I., Moreland, A., Garrett, R., Quiones, K., Spivey, B., Hamilton, J., & Lopez, C. M. (2023). Black Moms Matter: A Qualitative Approach to Understanding Barriers to Service Utilization at a Children’s Advocacy Center Following Childhood Abuse. Child Maltreatment.


    3. Wang, M.-T., Henry, D. A., Smith, L. V., Huguley, J. P., & Guo, J. (2020). Parental ethnic-racial socialization practices and children of color’s psychosocial and behavioral adjustment: A systematic review and meta-analysis. American Psychologist, 75(1), 1–22.


    4. Anderson, R., Metzger, I., Applewhite, K., Sawyer, B., Jackson, W., Flores, S., McKenny, M., & Carter, R. (2020). Hands Up, Now What?: Participant Reactions to Family and School Racial Socialization Interventions to Reduce Racial Stress for Black Youth. Journal of Youth Development. 93-109.


    5. Coard, S. I., Wallace, S. A., Stevenson, H. C., & Brotman, L. M. (2004). Towards culturally relevant preventive interventions: The consideration of racial socialization in parent training with African American families. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 13(3), 277-293.


    6. Neblett, E. W., White, R. L., Ford, K. R., Philip, C. L., Nguyên, H. X., & Sellers, R. M. (2008). Patterns of racial socialization and psychological adjustment: Can parental communications about race reduce the impact of racial discrimination?. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 18(3), 477-515.


    7. Williams, M. T., Metzger, I. W., Leins, C., & DeLapp, C. (2018). Assessing racial trauma within a DSM–5 framework: The UConn Racial/Ethnic Stress & Trauma Survey. Practice Innovations, 3(4), 242.


    8. Phipps, R., & Thorne, S. (2019). Utilizing Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy as a Framework for Addressing Cultural Trauma in African American Children and Adolescents: A Proposal. Professional Counselor, 9(1), 35-50.


    9. Metzger, I., Blevins, C., Calhoun, C., Ritchwood, T., Gilmore, A., Stewart, R., Bountress, K. (2017). An Examination of the Impact of Maladaptive Coping on the Association between Stressor Type and Alcohol Use in College. Journal of American College Health, 65, 534-541.


    10. Metzger, I., Cooper, S. M., Flory, K., & Zarrett, N. (2013). Culturally Sensitive Risk-Behavior Prevention Programs for African American Adolescents: A Systematic Analysis. Clinical Child and Family Psychology Review, 16, 187-212.


    11. Metzger, I., Cooper, S. M., Ritchwood, T. D., Onyeuku, C., & Griffin, C. B. (2017). Profiles of African American College Students’ Alcohol Use and Sexual Behaviors: Associations with Stress, Racial Discrimination, and Social Support. The Journal of Sex Research, 54(3), 374-385.


    12. Metzger, I., Cooper, S., Griffin, C. B., Golden, A., Opara, I., & Ritchwood, T., (2020). Parenting Profiles of Academic and Racial Socialization: Associations with Academic Engagement and Perception of Academic Ability of African American Adolescents. Journal of School Psychology. 82;36-48.


    13. Gómez, J. M., & Gobin, R. L. (2020). Black women and girls &# MeToo: Rape, cultural betrayal, & healing. Sex Roles, 82(1), 1-12.


    14. Metzger, I., Salami, T., Carter, S., Halliday-Boykins, C. A., Anderson R. E., Jernigan, M. M., & Ritchwood, T. (2018). African American Emerging Adults’ Experiences with Racial Discrimination and Drinking Habits: The Moderating Roles of Perceived Stress. Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology.


    15. Anderson, R. E., & Stevenson, H. C. (2019). RECASTing racial stress and trauma: Theorizing the healing potential of racial socialization in families. American Psychologist, 74(1), 63–75.


    16. Wingood, G. M., & DiClemente, R. J. (2008). The ADAPT-ITT model: a novel method of adapting evidence-based HIV Interventions. JAIDS Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes, 47, S40-S46.



    Additional readings, assessments, scripts, role plays, clinician activities, and resources are made available for participants!


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    Recent Racial Trauma Trainings

    • Child Mind Institute
    • Minnesota Children’s Alliance
    • Lyra Health
    • Delta Airlines, Inc.
    • National Children’s Alliance
    • Bowtie Leadership & Development, Inc.
    • Tysons Regional Chamber of Commerce
    • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Kenan-Flagler Business School
    • Utah Center for Evidence Based Treatment
    • Ball State University Department of Special Education
    • American Family Insurance
    • Firepower Concepts, LLC
    • The Cottage Sexual Assault Center and Children's Advocacy Center
    • The Georgia Center for Child Advocacy
    • Dee Norton Child Advocacy Center
    • Gaines Elementary School, Morgan County
    • Center for Health and Rehabilitation
    • National Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center
    • The Pediatric Diabetes and Obesity Institute- Healthy Lifestyles Clinic
    • Auburn University Department of Psychological Sciences
    • Auburn University Human Development and Family Sciences Department
    • Child Mind Institute, School and Community Programs
    • BlueSprig Pediatrics
    • STRONG STAR Training Initiative and Consortium to Alleviate PTSD
    • University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio