Understanding Trauma, a Workshop for Birth Workers (Virtual)

Designed for birth workers, this workshop will explore how trauma affects pregnant people and offer best practices in supporting them during pregnancy, labor, delivery, and parenthood.

Workshop Includes:

  • Introduction to understanding trauma and its impact on the brain, mind, body, families, and communities
  • How to identify trauma symptoms and practical applications for healing
  • Ways to make your intake and paperwork more trauma-informed
  • Tools for regulating the nervous system and how one might discharge and process trauma
    in the body
  • Take home tools to restore balance, renew hope and resilience in your clients
  • Learn how secondary trauma affects care providers and tools for prevention
  • Attendees will leave the workshop with tangible and unique trauma-informed tools to use
    immediately with clients

***This workshop is solely for professional development and is not intended for personal
healing. Please keep in mind that talking about trauma, even in the context of professional
training can be triggering. If you would benefit from processing trauma-related feelings, please
consider setting up resources beforehand.


Why is this important for all birth workers and care providers to know?
Media campaigns like the #MeToo movement have spread worldwide. People are beginning to
speak more openly about violence against women. According to CNN, 1 in 3 women will
experience violence in a relationship during their lifetime. Approximately 70% of adults in the United States have experienced a traumatic event at least once in their lives and roughly 20% of
these people go on to develop posttraumatic stress disorder, or PTSD (sidran.org).

Therefore it’s likely that one or more of your clients is a trauma survivor, regardless of whether
they identify with this term. Clients may come to you not realizing that giving birth and/or
becoming a parent may uncover trauma still held within the mind & body. Most people do not
expect to have an intense memory, emotion, or physical response while giving birth. Without a
basic understanding of the signs and symptoms of trauma, we as health and wellness providers
lack the tools and skills to support pregnant people through these experiences.

For trauma survivors, the experience of carrying and birthing a baby has the potential to be
overwhelming. Often this causes shame and confusion and can create additional barriers to
healing the original trauma. With a basic understanding of trauma-informed principles, we can
participate in creating spaces that empower pregnant people rather than trigger and shame them.
Armed with trauma-informed tools, we can begin to build a culture that nourishes resilience and fosters post-traumatic growth.



curriculum created and taught by Tara Tonini


Tara Tonini is a lover of nature, movement, color and creativity. Tara is a yoga and meditation teacher, Birth Doula, Master Reiki Healer and currently working towards her Masters Degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Tara approaches each healing modality through a trauma-informed lens. Tara has studied with Bessel Van Der Kolk, M.D., and Lisa Danylchuk, LMFT. She is a founding member of The Center For Yoga and Trauma Recovery and served for five years as Director of Curriculum Development and Mentorship at Exhale to Inhale where she led trauma-informed yoga training worldwide.