Compassion Fatigue Seminars

wellness symposium


Wellness Symposium 2015

GLUCKSTEIN SIGNATURE EVENTS   l  10th Annual Compassion Fatigue Symposium

Begin to invest in yourself and in your future well-being.
Learn how you can educate, create opportunities,
translate concepts and invigorate yourself
with supportive connections.

Gluckstein Lawyers present Wellness 2015

wellness success


Wellness l Agenda



  • 08:00 > Registration & Breakfast
  • 08:45 > Welcome and Opening Remarks by Sponsor, Gluckstein Lawyers
  • 09:00  >    Dr. Kyle Killian, York University
  • 10:30 > Break
  • 10:50  >    Cher Curshen, Bighearts Studios


  • 12:00 > Lunch Buffet
  • 13:00  >    Valerie Spironello, Choose Wellness
  • 14:30 > Break
  • 14:50  >    Sylvie Dagenais-Douville, The Laughing Institute
  • 15:30 > Closing Remarks, Draw, Trick or Treat, Thank You

Wellness  l Morning

Compassion Fatigue vs. Vicarious Resilience: Keys to Our Health

SPEAKER  l    Dr. Kyle D. Killian, Ph.D., RMFT

What predicts our compassion fatigue, burnout, and resilience when our work with trauma survivors becomes challenging? This workshop will focus on the rewards and stresses that are a part of "helping professions", broadly defined, and presents key factors associated with professionals’ health. Drawing from a study of professionals working with traumatized populations, this presentation shows the important roles played by social support, emotional self-awareness, and work environment in our risk of developing secondary traumatic stress and our levels of compassion satisfaction, fatigue, and burnout. New research on vicarious resilience will be presented, and techniques and strategies for enhancing one’s resilience will be discussed.


EMBRACE Quilt Workshop

SPEAKER  l Cher Curshen, Clinical Trauma Specialist, Expressive Arts Therapist

This workshop will provide a creative means towards regeneration and the honouring of YOU. Cher will gently guide you through a visualization meditation supporting relaxation and renewal. This will be followed with an opportunity for you to create individual quilt squares that will become a community EMBRACE quilt with a mixture of textures, patterns and colours.


Wellness l Afternoon


Choosing Wellness

SPEAKER  l Valerie Spironello , MSW, RSW, Wellness Coach 

Having worked in the field of child welfare, domestic violence, palliative care and now private practice, Valerie knows first hand the 'Cost of Caring’.

Using her  re-discovered sense of humour, Valerie will share how Compassion Fatigue snuck up on her, changed her and how she survived to tell her story.

She will share in a way that allows participants to reflect on how they are doing and to begin to explore what is needed to continue to be healthy while working in the field.


Laughter Yoga as a Life Tool

SPEAKER  l Sylvie Dagenais-Douville, Certified Laughter Yoga Instructor & Coach

"Countless studies have validated the efficacy of laughter and its therapeutic power in dealing with physical, mental and emotional health. It has the power to enhance the inner strength and provide support when life offers a challenge and one faces difficult times.

I look forward to share my passion and make you better understand how laughter yoga is an amazing life tool to manage stress. Yes, there will be a little bit of theory, but, I promise lots of practice!!!!"


About Our Speakers

4 Guest Speakers, 4 Strategies to Managing Your Wellness


Dr. Kyle D. Killian, Ph.D., RMFT

Kyle D. Killian, Ph.D., RMFT is Associate Professor in the Faculty of Health at York University, teaches in the School of Nursing and is Research Faculty at the Centre for Refugee Studies. Dr. Killian has published articles and book chapters on factors associated with resilience and burnout in health care professionals, emotional intelligence, immigrant and refugee families, and trauma.




Cher Curshen, Clinical Trauma Specialist, Expressive Arts Therapist, Educator

Exploring opportunitites to express yourself!

Cher is an Expressive Arts Therapist, Clinical Trauma Specialist, Certified Compassion Fatigue Specialist and Therapeutic Touch Recognized Practitioner, with over 16 years experience working with families, children, youth and adults. She has experience working within health and social service agencies and in school settings supporting individuals living with life-limiting illness, trauma, complex and traumatic grief, anticipatory grief and loss, mental health issues such as depression, anxiety and addictions.

Cher is grounded, calm, highly compassionate, energetically strong and balanced making her a soothing presence as therapist and trauma specialist. Her relationship with individuals is guided by a person-centered approach, genuine caring, respect and belief in the capacity for healing and growth. She  utilizes creative arts techniques in a gentle, sensitive and active way.




Valerie Spironello, MSW, RSW, Wellness Coach

Discover the concepts involved in choosing wellness!

Valerie Spironello has been a social worker for over 25 years in a variety of settings including wellness counselling, health care, palliative care, family therapy, child welfare, family violence. In her career, Valerie recognized the importance of addressing challenges holistically.

She discovered the importance of looking at difficulties and problems using a holistic approach. People are much better equipped to deal with the struggles and changes we encounter if we feel whole and healthy in our body, mind and spirit. We become more resilient to life’s challenges such as wellness, compassion fatigue, life transitions, relationship challenges, sexuality, bereavement, health problems, work/life balance.




Sylvie Dagenais-Douville, Certified Laughter Yoga Instructor & Laughter Coach

About Sylvie Dagenais-Douville

A professional laughter yoga leader, Sylvie Dagenais-Douville has been promoting laughter as a proven method to help cope with stress and anxiety, for a healthier and more positive lifestyle.

Laughter Yoga is a revolutionary idea – simple and profound. An exercise routine, it is sweeping the world and is a complete well-being workout. Developed by a medical doctor from India, Dr. Madan Kataria, it has spread across 72 countries.




Wellness Registration

Who Should Attend?

The individuals who offer vital support, "helping professionals" in our community, that include:

  • Acute Care Trauma Professionals
    • nurses,
    • social workers
    • paramedics
  • Rehabilitation Professionals
    • psychologists,
    • physiotherapists
    • occupational therapists
    • case managers
    • health care workers
  • Caregivers and Family Members


Why Should You Attend?

Helping professionals and caregivers can develop profound emotional and physical exhaustion over the course of their career. It is a gradual erosion of all the things that keep us connected to others: our empathy, our hope, and of course our compassion — not only for others but also for ourselves.

These dedicated individuals are exposed to intimate and explicit trauma every day and are particularly susceptible to the stress that is associated with trauma, burnout and compassion fatigue.

Learn personal-care strategies that can be used to reduce the negative consequences of high stress and trauma environments.


Committee Members

A special thanks is given to the Committee Members for their on-going support:

  • Geraldine Hubble, RN., MHS
  • Julie Macdonald, RN(EC), Nurse Practitioner
  • Paul Standish, RRP, Case Manager/ Proprietor, Brain Injury
  • Ellen Valleau, Social Worker

GLUCKSTEIN Lawyers and Staff Members

  • Bernard Gluckstein
  • Charles Gluckstein
  • Dianne Henderson
  • Jonathan Burton
  • Jordan Assaraf
  • Alison O'Callaghan

Event Details

LOCATION  l   St. Andrew's Club & Conference Center Map l

150 King Street West, Toronto, Ontario M5H 1J9 (Sun Life Financial Tower)

DATE l  October 27, 2015

SPONSOR l  Gluckstein Personal Injury Lawyers

Do you need more information on this event? Please contact:

R.N., B.A. Psych., M.Ed., Medical-Legal Consultant
E-mail |
Phone l 416.408.4252, Ext.236

E-mail |
Phone l 416.408.4252, Ext.230