How do I know if I’m a good fit for the group?
If you are a woman or identify as a woman and have experienced an event (or events) in your past that was distressing enough that it left a lasting impact then EmpowerME is for you. Traumatic experiences include (but are not limited to):
- Emotional, physical, or sexual abuse in childhood
- Abandonment or neglect (especially during childhood)
- Sexual assault
- Domestic abuse
- Experiencing or witnessing a violent crime
- Institutional abuse (abuse in the workplace, hospitals, correctional facilities, etc)
- Cultural dislocation
- Terrorism or war
- Any situation where one person misuses power over another
What is the typical age range of participants?
We’ve had groups in the past with a wide range of ages, some women were in their early to mid 20’s and others in their mid to late 60’s. The average age is typically between 35 and 55, but even when we’ve had very age diverse groups everyone has felt comfortable and included. No matter our age we all have valuable experiences and insights to bring to the table.
I’ve tried other groups before and didn’t feel comfortable. Who tends to join these groups?
The groups are often an eclectic mix of professional women (such as teachers, nurses, therapists, etc), college students, stay-at-home mom’s, and retired women. The women who typically find this group to be a good fit are those who generally have their basic needs taken care of and often have done at least some individual trauma treatment. We recommend that women who are struggling with an active addiction(s) or are having difficulty getting their basic needs met (such as secure housing, food, etc) wait to participate in the program until after these other areas of their life are feeling more secure.
How many spaces are available in each group?
We strive to find a balance between the groups being large enough that participants can expect to have meaningful discussions but small enough that everyone (who wishes to) has a chance to talk and get to know one another. The maximum number of participants that you can expect in the Auburn group is 10 and the maximum number in Portland is 12. On average, the groups have been made up of 6 – 8 women.
When do the groups meet?
The Auburn group meets on Tuesday evenings and the Portland group meets on Thursday evenings. New groups start each April and October. Groups starting in April meet from 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm and the groups that start in October meet from 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm in each location on their respective days.
How long does the group last?
The group meets for 35-weeks or approximately 9-months. The long-term nature of the group can sometimes be intimidating but we truly believe that it’s important to achieve our goal of achieving impactful healing. The program is structured in a way that allows us to build a strong foundation of trust, guide participants to important personal insights, create meaningful connections, gain valuable knowledge, and develop lasting skills.
Am I able to try the group out before I decide if I want to commit to the entire program?
Absolutely! Women who are interested are invited to attend the first four meetings without making any commitment to continue beyond that first month of meetings. You will still be required to pay the deposit and will be charged for the sessions that you attend, but if you decide that EmpowerME is not a good fit for you then you will not be under any obligation to continue. If you decide to continue past those first four weeks we ask that you be ready to make a commitment to yourself and the rest of your groupmates and see the program through to the end.
How much does it cost?
There is a non-refundable $25 deposit required when you register and then each 90-minute weekly session is $25. Participants have the option of paying for the entire program in advance (and receiving a 10% discount) or putting a card on file that will be billed monthly.
Can I use my insurance?
Unfortunately, we are currently unable to accept insurance for this program.
Are there any plans to add more group times or locations?
Although there currently aren’t any definite plans for expansion we are always looking for opportunities to grow our program. If there is a particular location, time, or day that you’d be interested in please reach out to let us know and if there’s enough interest we’ll see if we can make it happen. We are also hoping to start offering a virtual group sometime in the next year that would meet online using video conferencing.
Are you able to offer any financial assistance?
At this time we aren’t able to offer any scholarships or financial assistance for the program but we are happy to speak with you to try and help brainstorm ways that you might be able to find support to make the group accessible for you.