In honor of national Eating Disorders Awareness Week, Feb. 22-28, the EDRS and the Petaluma Health Care District host the annual Eating Disorders Awareness event Saturday, Feb. 28 and Sunday, March 1 at the Institute of Noetic Sciences in Petaluma.
According to the National Eating Disorders Awareness Association, as many as 10 million females and 1 million males are fighting a life-and-death battle with an eating disorder such as anorexia or bulimia in the United States. Millions more are struggling with binge eating disorders.
With so many people dealing with eating disorders, offering recovery services locally is vital, which is why the EDRS was formed. The organization serves as a referral source for the general public as well as for professionals. EDRS is also striving to provide financial help to those in need of treatment, but who cannot afford it on their own.
The upcoming EDA workshop, ?It Takes a Creative Village,? is for individuals, families and professionals seeking support and more information about eating disorders, treatment and recovery.
?We?re now in our third year of our EDA event,? said Michelle Minero, executive director of the EDRS. ?The Petaluma Health Care District has really been our advocate for the last three years, sponsoring our locations and ads. They?ve also allowed us to have our free support groups for individuals and families every Saturday in Petaluma.?
The EDA workshop kicks off on Saturday with a panel presentation and question-and-answer session on ?The Helix Model Treatment Team Approach to Restoration of Health? with dietitian Ronnie Benjamin, Dr. Pam Carlton, Dr. Haleh Kashani, Dr. Adair Look and marriage and family therapist Minero.
?The presentation is about the restoration of health and recovery,? said Minero. ?The theme of the workshop, ?It Takes a Creative Village,? is the main teaching point of the panel. Recovery from an eating disorder takes a team. It?s not just a one-strand kind of problem.?
Following the panel presentation, Chi Gung teacher Lee Gwin will demonstrate how Chi Gung and Tai Chi can be used to develop a better image of the body.
Dietitian Barbara Birsinger and Connie Sobczak, co-founder of The Body Positive, will be doing a presentation on restoring balance in eating and weight issues, which includes a video presentation on ?Your Perfect Weight? and ?Decoding Food Cravings and Body Talk.?
Saturday?s event concludes with, ?The Many Faces of Recovery,? a panel presentation featuring individuals who are recovering from an eating disorder.
?Marriage and family therapist Roberta Vinck is going to be singing a song she wrote about recovery called, ?The Mother Within,? said Minero. ?The CD of the song will be for sale, with proceeds benefiting EDRS.?
Day two of the EDA workshop begins with Minero speaking on the topic of ?Self Love: the only diet that works.?
?The main thing I?ve found while working in this field is that you can give people an intervention and the tools they need for recovery, and perhaps behaviors will change, but they still continue with self-loathing,? said Minero. ?That self-loathing usually shows up in body image distortion. I want to show them that there really is a way to let go of the self-criticism, which increases chances for recovery.?
Gwinn continues the program with a demonstration on Chi Gung for enhancing life energy, followed by Vinck?s presentation on ?Using Your Voice as a Tool for Healing.?