Unity in Diversity

Exploring Neurodiversity: A Conference for GSRD Therapists

 

Pink Therapy Conference – Saturday 6 April 2024

 

Unity in Diversity Logo Pink Therapy Conference 2024

 

 

Join us for a groundbreaking international conference that delves into the rich tapestry of Neurodivergence within the LGBTQ+ community. This hybrid event seamlessly blends in-person and virtual experiences, ensuring that professionals from around the world can come together to explore, learn, and grow, regardless of their geographical location.

Book online here>>

Event Highlights

 

1. Inclusive Hybrid Experience

Embrace the flexibility of our hybrid format, providing you with the choice to attend in person or connect virtually. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of the in-person conference, or join us from the comfort of your home via Zoom. No matter where you are, the global community of GSRD therapists awaits you.

As much as we want this to be a safe space for neurodivergent therapists, we expect the conference to have around 100 in-person participants. Inevitably, this is likely to be a loud and over-stimulating environment for people with sensory challenges. Please be mindful of your needs and choose the online option if this is likely to overwhelm you. 

 

2. Lived Experiences Shared

Gain invaluable insights as neurodivergent therapists bravely share their personal journeys. Learn from their lived experiences, fostering a deeper understanding and empathy that will enhance your therapeutic practice. 

 

3. Cultural Competency Guidelines

Explore the nuances of cultural competency in neurodivergence. The presenter will assist you in creating guidelines for working with autistic individuals and addressing the intersection of gender, sexual orientation, and neurodivergence. You will gain the ability to create inclusive therapeutic spaces.

 

4. Fostering Joy in Autistic Trans Teens

Delve into workshops specifically designed to explore ways to foster joy in groups of autistic trans teens. Discover practical strategies and creative approaches that empower you to make a positive impact on the lives of young individuals navigating both neurodivergence and gender identity.

 

5. Smaller workshops online and in-person 

Art Therapy, Polyvagal Theory, Acquired neurodivergence: Supporting neurocognitive difference in GSRD populations, Coming Out as Neurodivergent, Group work with autistic trans young people, Supporting older neurodivergent folk. Subject to availability and limited places available.

 

6. Professionally Filmed Presentations

Rest assured that we will professionally film the Keynote sessions for those unable to attend on the day. Experience the conference at your own pace, with the ability to revisit content and gain knowledge from the comfort of your home or office.

Why Attend?

  • Networking Opportunities: Connect with like-minded professionals from diverse backgrounds, fostering a network of support and collaboration.
  • Continuing Education Credits: Earn valuable continuing education credits while expanding your knowledge and skill set.
  • Inspiration and Empowerment: Be inspired by the stories of neurodivergent individuals and empowered with practical tools to enhance your therapeutic practice.

Don’t miss this unique opportunity to be part of a movement dedicated to advancing the understanding and practice of GSRD therapy within the context of Neurodivergence. Secure your spot today and embark on a journey of discovery, connection, and professional growth.

Date: Saturday 6th April 2024 

Location: Resource for London, Holloway Road, London N7 & online via Zoom

Tickets from: £110 in person and £80 via Zoom. 
In-person tickets are now sold out.  The conference is being recorded

COME and CELEBRATE after the conference, we will be celebrating 25 years of Pink Therapy
We have been able to book a party space near Liverpool St station! Please book your party ticket and have a drink and bop with us. link.outsavvy.com/25

Don’t miss this unique opportunity to be part of a movement dedicated to advancing the understanding and practice of GSRD therapy within the context of Neurodivergence. Secure your spot today and embark on a journey of discovery, connection, and professional growth.

Dominic Davies

Founder, Pink Therapy

Pink Therapy Conference 2024 Logo Unity in Diversity

Unity in Diversity: An Exploration for GSRD Therapists

Online and in-person delegates

09:00 Arrivals & Registration

09:45 Announcements and Welcome – Dominic Davies

10:00 Alex Drummond, Nairmi Rowe, Louise Brown, Olatunde Spence & Tris Brooks – Tapping Neurodivergent Knowledge panel and Q&A

11:15 Break

11:45 Zoe Goodacre – Cultural Competence with Autistic Clients & Q&A

12:30 Lunch (not included)

13:30  Conference Resumes

Three strands commence (Online and in-person options)

 Online Option

13:30 Pecha Kucha – Research presentations via Zoom OR Victoria Snowden – Supporting the Queer Aging Autistic population via Zoom

14:00 Maria Kindstedt –  From isolation and shame to connection and pride: Via Zoom OR Sand Tray work – subject to a facilitator being found: Via Zoom

15:00 Break

15:30 Erika Miley – ADHD for AFAB people, and Sex via Zoom

16:30 Dominic Davies – Closing Plenary, Next Steps and Thank You: Via Zoom

5pm Close

In-Person Option One

13.30 Pecha Kucha – Research presentations: Main Room

14.00 Maria Kindstedt – From isolation and shame to connection and pride: Main Room

15:00 Break

15:30 Alexandra Richards – Acquired neurodivergence: Supporting neurocognitive difference in GSRD populations: Main Room 

16:30 Dominic Davies – Closing Plenary Next Steps and Thank You: Main Room 

5pm Close

In-Person Option Two

13.30 Alison Wren – Playing with Permission (limited to 30 people who sign up on the day): Seminar Room 3 OR TBC Seminar Room 6

14.00 Maria Kindstedt – From isolation and shame to connection and pride: Main Room

15:00 Break

15:30 Daniel Morrison – Neuroqueering Polyvagal Theory: Seminar Room 3 OR Louise Brown Coming Out and Coming In: Discovering our Queer and Neurodivergent Selves: Seminar Room 6

16:30 Dominic Davies – Closing Plenary Next Steps and Thank You: Main Room 

5pm Close

Keynote Lecture: Presenters & panellists

OPENING KEYNOTE & PANEL


Facilitator

Alex_Drummond

Alex Drummond MSc BA(QTS) GSRD (Accred) (she/her)

Alex has had a clinical and academic interest in neurodivergence since the early 2000s.  More latterly trained in the DIVA diagnostic interview for diagnosis of adult ADHD and is guest lecturer/presenter on the topic. Alex spoke at the International Pluralistic Counselling Conference in 2022 on ‌Anger Management – When ADHD or Autism Underpins Domestic Conflict and Violence.

Panellists

Nairmi Rowe

Nairmi Rowe (they/them)

Nairmi is a music therapist with experience of working as a school-based counsellor and with ND adults.  Registered with HCPC.

“I am a freelance HCPC Registered Music Therapist based in Central Birmingham. I have 9 years post-qualification experience with children and young people with a variety of additional needs, and I specialise in working with the neurodivergent and LGBTQ+ communities. I am a published author on the topics of Intersectionality and working with the Neuroqueer (neurodivergent and LGBTQ+) populations. I have created my own specialism of Intersectional Psychodynamic Music Therapy (IPMT)”

Louise Brown

Louise Brown (she/her)

Louise is a queer, multiply neurodivergent Therapist, Supervisor and Trainer working in private practice. Louise has previously worked for many years as a disability practitioner before training as a therapist and coming to know her neurodivergent identity. She now works predominantly with neurodivergent clients and therapists, exploring their own neurodivergent identities and figuring out how to curate a life that works for them.

Most recently, she has been developing a model of neurodivergent wellbeing based on her lived experience, alongside her professional and academic knowledge. Working with the strands of knowledge, understanding and acceptance and how they can be woven together through self-compassion, this model forms the foundation of a package of resources and training to help therapists continue to support neurodivergent clients in an affirming and inclusive way.  You can find out more about the model and resources at www.curiosityspot.co.uk

Olatunde Spence

Olatunde Spence (she/her)

Olatunde is a Trauma-informed Art therapist and activist. Autistic herself, she is particularly interested in working with intersections of identity, particularly where race and neurodivergence combine. Olatunde is a trainer for the National Autism Programme (NATP)

Anna Freud and AT-Autism have joined forces to develop a ground-breaking autism train the trainer programme for NHS England.
The training programme is co-designed, co-produced and co-delivered with autistic people and promotes an experience-sensitive, trauma-informed approach.

Read more at Akoma Healing H`Arts.

Tris Brooks (they/them)

Tris is a familiar face at Pink Therapy conferences. Neurodivergent themselves, Tris is a GSRD Advanced Accredited Therapist and a graduate of Pink Therapy’s two-year programme. They work in a Pluralistic modality with an almost exclusively ND client base. See Tris’ Pink Therapy Directory profile here.

Speakers and presenters (in alphabetical order)

Louise Brown

Louise Brown: “In this presentation, I will share my two coming out (or in) stories. The first one as a teenager in the nineties when I first started to understand my queerness, through to my thirties when I could finally stand firm in it. Just as I had integrated and embedded that part of myself, my autistic identity came into my awareness for the first time and the process started all over again. This time therapy, access to resources and the internet helped along it. I will explore the parallels and intersections of these two experiences and how my lived experience informs my work with clients.”

Zoe Goodacre

Zoe Goodacre – Keynote Lecture: Explore the nuances of cultural competency in neurodivergence. The presenter will talk through work to date on guidelines to develop cultural competence for work with autistic and ADHD individuals, addressing the intersection of gender, sexual orientation, and neurodivergence. The session will encourage self-reflection on accessibility for autistic and ADHD clients and help you move towards more inclusive therapeutic practice.

Zoe Goodacre is an autistic counsellor and graduate of the Pink Therapy Diploma in GSRD Therapy. They work with predominantly neurodivergent queer clients and are furthering their education with the Advanced Specialist Diploma in GSRD Psychotherapy.

Maria Kindstedt

Maria Kindstedt – Keynote Lecture: From isolation and shame to connection and pride.

Building communication and relationships and fostering joy for autistic trans youth and their families with group work.

A total of 104 families participated in the PRIMA Trans project. The project aimed to lessen anxiety and depression symptoms connected to minority stress, decrease parental stress and worry, and increase quality of life.

Factors such as creating a safe environment, diverse communication styles, flexibility of participation, practising mentalisation and involving the entire family in building relationships proved successful. The group ‌became community building, where validation and executive help with sharing created connection and fostered joy and identity pride.

Within the parental group, breaking their isolation and sharing each other’s lives and coping strategies created a strong community that cared for each other and each other’s children.

Erika Miley

Dr Erika Miley: ADHD is one of the most researched neurodevelopmental disorders. That has not been the case for AFAB (assigned female at birth) people and their experiences of ADHD over their lifespans. More specifically, there has been no investigation of their experiences sexually and how ADHD may impact their experiences and their ability to experience sexual pleasure and connect with partners.

Dr. Erika Miley, LMHC CST is a highly accomplished and passionate mental health therapist, certified sex therapist, sex researcher, and esteemed professor. With a profound dedication to enhancing the well-being and understanding of individuals across various backgrounds, Dr. Miley’s expertise focuses on cis-women and other AFAB (Assigned Female at Birth) individuals, with a special emphasis on neurodiversity and how it impacts sexual functioning.

Daniel Morrison

Daniel Morrison: is a queer AuDHD therapist specialising in trauma and psychosexual therapy with GSRD clients. His writing has been published in Non Binary Lives and Queering Gestalt Therapy as well as various websites. He runs regular workshops online and in person on the autonomic nervous system, queer sexuality and the Wheel of Consent.

In this workshop, he offers a brief overview of the states of the nervous system, how to understand and use the states in client work and how to deepen your practice with embodied experience. He’ll discuss how the nervous systems of therapist and client interact in the room below the level of conscious awareness, how to bring that into awareness to deepen the connection, and how to bring that forward in sessions in practical ways to benefit the client. We’ll also explore how the framework can be adapted and expanded when working with neurodivergent clients, and how it can be of particular benefit to those who seek a scientific research-based explanation of human connection and relationships.
Alexandra Richards

Alexandra Richards (she/her) is a queer Clinical Psychologist specialising in neuropsychology and long-term health conditions. She has a professional interest in intersections between health, gender, and sexuality and works particularly with LGBTQ+ clients.

This workshop focuses on understanding and supporting the diverse experiences of individuals who have “acquired” neurodivergence; cognitive changes that are related to physical illness or injury rather than occurring since birth. The session will include examples from clients with neurological conditions such as Stroke but also other health conditions with neurocognitive symptoms such as chronic pain and Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome.

People in GSRD populations are largely as likely to experience complex health conditions as their heteronormative counterparts, but the intersection of these identities can throw up different challenges e.g. monitoring how “out” to be in different environments to maintain personal safety requires significant skill in memory, attention and executive functioning.

The latter part of the workshop focuses on making therapy accessible to clients with a range of cognitive issues. As no client has an entirely “average” pattern of cognitive abilities, these skills are relevant to disabled and non-disabled clients.

Victoria Snowden

Victoria Snowden: In this workshop, we will discuss a brief history of the Autistic community and research into Autistic Aging, including neurodivergent palliative and end-of-life care. We will also discuss the statistics around Queer Autistics, and merge this research with how one must be supportive and inclusive of LGBTQ+ populations to ‌be supportive of the Autistic populations.

Victoria is a Black, Queer, Autistic Death Doula, Grief and Interfaith Guide, Yoga and Meditation Teacher, and Clinical Herbalist from rural Georgia (US), residing on Muscogee Land. Through her platform of Guided Cycles, she teaches about the biological, cultural, social, political, ancestral, and generational dimensions and ecosystemic aspects of Aging, Grief, and Death, highlighting how grief and death have unique elements in marginalized communities.

Ali Wren

Ali Wren is a queer neurodivergent integrative art psychotherapist who specialises in working with GSRD clients. In this creative and interactive workshop, Ali will share some examples of divergent thinking from their client work, in addition to inviting participants to use playful objects to reflect on their own experiences of how the permissions we offer ourselves and our clients in relation to neurodivergence may ‘play out’ in our therapeutic practices.

We will ask ourselves questions that our trainings may not have prepared us for, such as if we are ‘allowed’ to share our access needs with clients or if it is ok to raise with a client if we think they might be neurodivergent.

There will be no obligation to share verbally. There will be an opportunity for small group discussion and an option for those who may want to participate, but more individually reflect on the themes. Creative objects will be provided, but you are also very welcome to bring your own.