Trauma Transformed - 16 Women Veteran MST Survivors

 — (MST, UTC-07) — (MST, UTC-07)

Franciscan Renewal Center, 5802 E Lincoln Dr,, Scottsdale, AZ 85253

Sexual Trauma (MST) survivors in Scottsdale, Arizona. The retreat culminates with an art show where the veterans will display their healing creations on Saturday, November 23rd from 6:00pm to 8:30pm at the Franciscan Renewal Center located at 5802 E Lincoln Dr, Scottsdale, AZ 85253. This event is free and open to the public. 13yo and older is encouraged do to the frank nature of the topics that will be discussed.

The retreat is offered free of charge to 16 Women Veterans who survived Military Sexual Trauma. 8 of the veterans will be local while the other 8 are from across the country. The retreat is facilitated by an experienced all volunteer staff of 5, three are veterans, two who are civilian therapists. Over the course of the 4 day retreat, the veterans explore aspects of their military service and subsequent trauma through a variety of art modalities including writing, painting, drawing, and songwriting. Each session is followed by an educational/instructional mind/body competent to assist in reducing any PSTD symptoms that arise from exploring the trauma. The art show is a key component to the healing power of the retreat as it allows the veteran to communicate the parts of the trauma that they most need to express publicly. Many participants share things they have never told to another person, and feel unburdened afterwards. Audience members from previous art show often state that the experience is one of the most profound and moving experiences of their lives.

Warrior Songs hosted a similar retreat in 2019. A video highlighting the retreat can be found here: A full retreat report can be found at this link Local staff has been fundraising to cover the cost of the retreat since January 2020. Retreat facilitator and MST Survivor Luz Helena Thompson says, ““I am proud to be part of this retreat. Warrior songs utilizes creative arts as a powerful approach to supporting women veterans through the healing process and recovery from Military Sexual Trauma. I invite you to support the Warrior Songs Creative Arts Retreat by learning more about our programs on the website.”