Trauma Conference 2023 – Applying Trauma Approaches in Clinical Practice


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Trauma is becoming one of the most talked about areas of mental health, with this we wanted to follow on from our hugely successful Trauma conference in 2021. Through research we realised the need for application of trauma based techniques into the clinical setting.

We are very fortunate to have a fantastic array of experienced Speakers including Alex Howard, Sarah Naish, David Smallwood, Dr. Neil Brener, Simon Marks, TJ Woodward, David Behrens and Ameet Braich. We will also be hosting a panel discussion at the end of the day with Lou Lebentz (MC), Dr. Sarah Woodhouse, Chris John, Maaike Beech and Claire Parrish. See below or more information about the talks. Don’t miss this opportunity to enhance your understanding of trauma. Secure your spot today.

Speaker Line-Up


Alex Howard

“How to Decode Trauma”

9:00 - 9:45 AM

Join Alex Howard, Founder & Chairman of The Optimum Health Clinic (OHC), for an empowering talk on decoding trauma and achieving lasting healing. Discover the ECHO model of trauma and the three core emotional needs pivotal to understanding childhood trauma. Learn how patients can meet these needs themselves, fostering true transformation.

Alex Howard is the visionary behind The Optimum Health Clinic (OHC), a renowned integrative medicine center with 25 practitioners serving patients in 50+ countries. He pioneered Therapeutic Coaching and shares his insights on the In Therapy with Alex Howard YouTube series. As a leading figure in health and mind-body fields, he has organized large-scale online conferences, including the Trauma Super Conference. Alex’s research has graced esteemed journals like the British Medical Journal Open and Psychology and Health. He’s also the author of bestsellers like “Why Me?” and “Decode Your Fatigue,” with his upcoming book, “It’s Not Your Fault,” scheduled for publication by Hay House in September 2023.

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Sarah Naish

“Therapeutic Parenting – the Answer to Child Trauma”

9:45 - 10:30 AM

Discover the power of Therapeutic Parenting in re-parenting traumatised children. Sarah Naish, an award-winning expert and sought-after media spokesperson, will share effective techniques and strategies. She’ll also shed light on the groundbreaking therapy called ‘Havening’ and its transformative effects within The Centre of Excellence in Child Trauma.

Sarah Naish is a renowned keynote speaker, media spokesperson, and bestselling international author. Her models of specialized parenting have significantly raised awareness of the needs of traumatized children nationwide. Drawing from her experience as a former social worker, foster carer, and adoptive mother to five profoundly traumatized siblings, Sarah brings firsthand expertise and understanding to her work. She has made significant contributions to national and international conferences on child trauma, captivating audiences in countries like the USA, Australia, Singapore, Iceland, and Estonia.

For more information please visit:

30 Minute Break

Ameet Braich

"Shame and Development Trauma"

11:00 - 11:45 AM

In this presentation, Ameet will explore the dysfunctional family system and its impact on our beliefs about ourselves and the world. By examining relationships, culture, and specific childhood events, he shows how these factors shape our perceptions and behaviours. Understanding how these beliefs are expressed is crucial in addressing and breaking the cycle of dysfunction. By doing so, we can create healthier and more fulfilling lives and relationships.

Ameet Singh Braich is the clinical director of Camino Recovery, overseeing  clinical practices and improving standards of care. With over 20 years of experience, he specializes in trauma resolution, family systems and compulsivity, taking a holistic approach to therapy. Ameet holds an MA in Addiction Counselling and Psychotherapy (Hazelden Minnesota, USA) and a BEng in Biochemical Engineering (University College London).

Ameet is an enthusiastic individual dedicated to supporting people in their healing journey. With a diverse range of approaches including meditation, equine-assisted psychotherapy, and EMDR, he empowers individuals to overcome their challenges. Ameet is an engaging speaker, a skilled trainer, and an innovative thinker who motivates clients to transcend personal barriers and unleash their creative potential.

David Smallwood (top right)

Simon Marks (bottom right)

Dr Neil Brener (left)

“Addiction: The Tip Of The Iceberg?”

11:45 AM - 12:30 PM

David Smallwood, Dr. Neil Brener, and Simon Marks explore the profound link between trauma and addiction, challenging traditional perspectives and outcomes in addiction treatment. Drawing on their extensive professional knowledge and personal experiences, they shed light on the iceberg beneath addiction’s surface. 

David Smallwood: With over 20 years of experience, David holds a Masters degree in addiction counseling and psychology. He specializes in co-dependence, family of origin, and intervention for addictive problems, and has received training in EMDR and PIT.

Dr. Neil Brener: A Consultant Psychiatrist with 25+ years of experience, Dr. Neil specializes in addiction, anxiety, and depression treatment. He practices in both NHS and private sectors, serving patients in central and north London.

Simon Marks: A trauma therapist with expertise in LGBTQ+ mental health, addiction recovery, and dramatherapy for inner-child healing. As a gay man in long-term recovery, Simon provides empathetic therapy for individuals of diverse backgrounds, addressing specific LGBTQ+ concerns and challenges faced by abuse survivors.

1 Hour Lunch

TJ Woodward

“Unresolved Trauma: Is Healing Possible?”

1:30 - 2:15 PM

Join TJ Woodward as he delves into the impact of unresolved trauma on mental health and addiction. Discover how to assist clients in healing trauma, the role of authenticity and vulnerability in therapy, and the importance of the clinician’s personal healing journey. Explore techniques to facilitate healing, accessing inner wisdom, and overcoming patterns of relapse and hopelessness.

TJ Woodward is a revolutionary recovery expert, bestselling author, speaker, and addiction specialist. He has developed The Conscious Recovery Method, a groundbreaking approach to addiction treatment. TJ’s books, including Conscious Being and Conscious Recovery, have garnered widespread acclaim. As a featured thought-leader on and in the upcoming docuseries Addiction Revealed, he shares his wisdom alongside renowned figures like Brené Brown and Dr. Gabor Maté. TJ is an ordained Agape minister and the founding minister of Agape Bay Area in Oakland, a satellite community of The Agape International Spiritual Center.


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20 Minute Break

David Behrens

“Empowerment through Breathwork, Mindfulness, and Meditation: A Path to Recovery”

2:45 - 3:30 PM

Everyone suffering from Addiction has a story about some impactful trauma in their life. Recovery back to health will be through repairing one’s nervous system and strengthening brain functions, which is key to healing the deep wounds.

David will share his extensive knowledge of incorporating mindfulness-based practices in multi-discipline treatment programs, to enhance and empower healing and recovery in Mental health and Addiction.

David Behrens is a London and Gloucestershire-based breathwork, mindfulness, and meditation teacher. He collaborates with doctors, psychiatrists, and psychotherapists, specialising in addiction and mental health recovery, working with young people with learning disabilities, and supporting families. David also offers mindfulness-based stress management to individuals and corporations. As an MISP teacher, he trains social workers, teachers, and students. With nearly thirty years of meditation practice and teaching as a monk in India, David’s work is influenced by his studies in ayurvedic medicine, yoga philosophy, and homeopathy. He combines ancient yoga principles with contemporary nervous system science, tailoring his approach to each individual.


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Panel Speakers

Lou Lebentz (MC)

Founder of The Voyage®, Online Trainer, Trauma Clinician + Therapist, Speaker + Campaigner

3:30 - 4:15 PM

Lou is a highly experienced and well-known UK psychotherapist, trauma clinician and Founder of Trauma Thrivers, a podcast and Facebook community for those wanting to thrive through their trauma. 

Lou has recently launched The Voyage ®; an online training for coaches, counsellors and other health professionals who want to work more safely and effectively with trauma. She is also training clinical teams using this methodology and licensing it as a trauma track to utilise within rehabs and treatment centres.

Dr. Sarah Woodhouse

Trauma specialist, Coaching Psychologist, Author and Creator of Self-led Integration™

3:30 - 4:15 PM

Sarah received her PhD for research into Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) from the University of Sussex. Her research looked at the effect of people’s social lives, relationships and identities on their trauma symptoms and well-being. Her research was funded by the UK’s Medical Research Council (MRC). 

Sarah’s best-selling first book You’re Not Broken: Break Free From Trauma & Reclaim Your Life was published by Penguin Life.

Self-led Integration™ is a novel approach to trauma healing designed to empower clients to take responsibility for their healing and implement daily change.

Contact: Contact Sarah via her website or email her at

Chris John


3:30 - 4:15 PM

Chris John is a London-based psychotherapist who is well known for his innovative and empathic style of therapy. 

Chris has trained extensively with Pia Mellody of The Meadows, and he has become one of Europe’s leading trauma reduction specialists working with co-dependency, love addiction and shame-based issues created through ‘family of origin’ dynamics.

How to get in touch –

Maaike Beech

Integrative Psychotherapist, Clinical Lead, Trainer and Trauma Specialist

3:30 - 4:15 PM

Maaike Beech is a BACP Accredited, MNCPS Senior Accredited and EMDR UK Registered integrative counsellor and psychotherapist, clinical supervisor and trainer. Maaike has specialised in working with trauma for the last 16+ years, working for Victim Support, General Counselling Departments, a Hospice, Rape Crisis and the Children’s Society. Maaike completed training in TF-CBT, the Rewind-Technique, EMDR and Sensorimotor Psychotherapy.  Maaike currently works as a Clinical Lead for the Children’s Society for counsellors, psychotherapists, psychological therapists and clinical supervisors. 

She also is the Director of The Beech Practice Ltd., where she created and runs a NCPS Quality Checked Foundation Diploma – ‘Therapeutic Safety in Trauma’, as well as a Diploma in Clinical Supervision. She has set-up several counselling services for various organisations and is an experienced group therapist. 

Claire Parrish

Clinical Lead at Khiron Day Clinic

3:30 - 4:15 PM

Claire is the Clinical lead at Khiron Day Clinic. She trained at Regent’s University on a master’s programme in Integrative Psychotherapy and Counselling Psychology and is BACP accredited. Her practice draws together Attachment trauma and Structural dissociation, Gestalt, Mindfulness, Internal Family Systems, Safe and Sound Protocol, Sensorimotor Level 1 and EMDR Levels 1,2,3. She has worked for over a decade in the NHS and private practice, focusing on PTSD, Complex PTSD, bereavement, addiction and eating disorders.