About the TRĒhouse Project

About the TREHOUSE Project
Christine, Executive Director

What is The TREHOUSE Project and why is it important to me? Here’s the raw truth. As someone with a history of childhood sexual trauma I spent much of my life feeling bad, feeling uncomfortable in my skin. It wasn’t until I took my first aerobic class (moving to music, laughing, having fun – yes in awful leotards) while in college, that I finally started to FEEL normal. The key word here is “FEEL”.

When I was younger, I withdrew or avoided anything that made me uncomfortable, if I could. When life presented situations that I viewed as negative and I could not control, my mind would frequently go numb to cope. Fuzzy brain I call it (like sleep deprivation, you can’t process things clearly). I didn’t know why I felt or acted that way, I just did. Only friends, laughter good food and fun would make me feel better.

In college, socializing, drinking and dancing made me feel better, but the day after was usually hell. I also discovered aerobics then, similar to dancing, but I FELT BETTER the next day. I was hooked and felt amazing. I was comfortable in my skin for the first time. I was moving! I was FEELING better. Life began to get easier (as long as I kept moving).

Over the years, I became an instructor. I taught everything I could. I needed to move, to sweat and laugh because when I didn’t, even for more than a few days, I would feel bad again. I would find myself constantly cleaning because clutter is chaos. I needed to control my surroundings. Subtext here…”if I could control my surroundings then there will be no surprises and no chaos”. Uh huh….

At some point life happened: marriage, children, divorce, single parent, career change and more. By now exercise alone wasn’t enough. My body was cranky. I had a chronic backache and wicked tension in my neck, debilitating heartburn (so bad I ended up in the ER), was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease….I could go on. Chronic/toxic stress had moved in, and had no plans for leaving soon.

Ta da! Lucky for me, yoga found me. But how could stretching, sitting still and breathing on purpose benefit me? It was EXACTLY what my body craved. Exercise meets yoga, the perfect pairing. I noticed the difference again between how I felt when I did this daily, versus when I didn’t. When I didn’t, my resilience went south, I could go from a nice rational mommy to mental medusa mommy in a heartbeat and then would feel bad. I owed it not only to my girls to do this but to myself as well.

I was recently introduced to TRE (stress, tension and trauma release exercise). What I’ve learned about how bodies react to stress/trauma was life changing. I was amazed at the ease of this body-based tool used for stress management and trauma processing and the profound changes it can make if practiced. That was four years ago. I continue to learn more about myself through the practice of TRE on a daily basis and how it can help others. It is a gift. What I also know is that what happened to me as a child I could not control. What I can control is how I manage myself now.

I have been blessed with these gifts of movement. I believe that these tools are a necessity and I believe in social justice. Economic circumstances should not dictate whether or not we can afford a TRE or yoga class. The TREHOUSE Project was created with the deep belief that we all need and deserve wellness, that we all need and deserve to be healthy and we all need and deserve to feel good. These tools make life easier and we all deserve that.

X, Christine

About the TREHOUSE Project
Christine, Executive Director

What is The TREHOUSE Project and why is it important to me? Here’s the raw truth. As someone with a history of childhood sexual trauma I spent much of my life feeling bad, feeling uncomfortable in my skin. It wasn’t until I took my first aerobic class (moving to music, laughing, having fun – yes in awful leotards) while in college, that I finally started to FEEL normal. The key word here is “FEEL”.

When I was younger, I withdrew or avoided anything that made me uncomfortable, if I could. When life presented situations that I viewed as negative and I could not control, my mind would frequently go numb to cope. Fuzzy brain I call it (like sleep deprivation, you can’t process things clearly). I didn’t know why I felt or acted that way, I just did. Only friends, laughter good food and fun would make me feel better.

In college, socializing, drinking and dancing made me feel better, but the day after was usually hell. I also discovered aerobics then, similar to dancing, but I FELT BETTER the next day. I was hooked and felt amazing. I was comfortable in my skin for the first time. I was moving! I was FEELING better. Life began to get easier (as long as I kept moving).

Over the years, I became an instructor. I taught everything I could. I needed to move, to sweat and laugh because when I didn’t, even for more than a few days, I would feel bad again. I would find myself constantly cleaning because clutter is chaos. I needed to control my surroundings. Subtext here…”if I could control my surroundings then there will be no surprises and no chaos”. Uh huh….

At some point life happened: marriage, children, divorce, single parent, career change and more. By now exercise alone wasn’t enough. My body was cranky. I had a chronic backache and wicked tension in my neck, debilitating heartburn (so bad I ended up in the ER), was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease….I could go on. Chronic/toxic stress had moved in, and had no plans for leaving soon.

Ta da! Lucky for me, yoga found me. But how could stretching, sitting still and breathing on purpose benefit me? It was EXACTLY what my body craved. Exercise meets yoga, the perfect pairing. I noticed the difference again between how I felt when I did this daily, versus when I didn’t. When I didn’t, my resilience went south, I could go from a nice rational mommy to mental medusa mommy in a heartbeat and then would feel bad. I owed it not only to my girls to do this but to myself as well.

I was recently introduced to TRE (stress, tension and trauma release exercise). What I’ve learned about how bodies react to stress/trauma was life changing. I was amazed at the ease of this body-based tool used for stress management and trauma processing and the profound changes it can make if practiced. That was four years ago. I continue to learn more about myself through the practice of TRE on a daily basis and how it can help others. It is a gift. What I also know is that what happened to me as a child I could not control. What I can control is how I manage myself now.

I have been blessed with these gifts of movement. I believe that these tools are a necessity and I believe in social justice. Economic circumstances should not dictate whether or not we can afford a TRE or yoga class. The TREHOUSE Project was created with the deep belief that we all need and deserve wellness, that we all need and deserve to be healthy and we all need and deserve to feel good. These tools make life easier and we all deserve that.

X, Christine

The TREHOUSE Project is a unique new nonprofit in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

In 2016 it was suggested that WellFEST ( a one day wellness event) become a nonprofit. The mission of WellFEST was to provide wellness experiences and education for the community. Concurrently, the Eau Claire County Community Health Assessments results identified the top three priorities as mental health, alcohol misuse and obesity. It became us,  clear that the organization needed to redirect it’s purpose and provide more direct wellness services to those in need.

In 2018, we became The TREHOUSE Project Inc, (a 501c3 nonprofit). We empower people through body based healing using TRE® and yoga. We provide free wellness education and body based services to community partners (clients, caregivers, staff) and community members. We are able to provide these services FREE for community partners, through fundraising, donations, scholarships and grants.

Our licensed, highly experienced & trauma informed instructors, guide individuals in need,
through body based healing methods using TRE® & yoga.

Evidence based research shows body based methods can…

  • Raise Resilience
  • Reduce Anxiety & Depression
  • Decrease PTSD Symptoms
  • Decrease Emotional Reactivity
  • Reduce Pain & Heal Old Injuries
  • Serve as Immediate Stress Relief

How does the TREHOUSE Project address an important community health need or gap in service?

Currently there is no other organization in the area providing body based wellness education and healing to our community. The Community Health Assessment identified reasons or “why does this happen” in our community and gaps in services or understanding. All three areas identified a “lack of awareness, education and understanding”, and that stress played a critical role.

Of the current offerings, education and services offered to the area, most if not all are brain based and or use medication. The TREHOUSE Project brings awareness to the need of the body to be addressed in the healing process as well as the brain and provides education and body based healing in the form of YOGA and TRE® as a practical tool for populations who live in a constant state of survival and fight or flight or who experience vicarious trauma and compassion fatigue as a result of the work they provide to the community.

Stress and tension affect our health and when not released from the body can cause physical damage, emotional reactivity, “fuzzy thinking” and more. A National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) publication, “5 Things You Should Know About Stress”, recommended getting regular exercise and trying a relaxing activity are ways to combat stress. By integrating TRE® into client’s current program of care, and addressing the body’s need for healing as well as the brain, there is a higher degree for success for all involved including the client, client providers, client family and community.

We provide unique, simple and safe tools for well-being. TRE® has evidence-based research that identifies the efficacy of TRE® in populations dealing with high stress, tension and trauma including veterans, care givers, social work professionals, and more as seen in cited research on the founder of TRE®, Dr. David Berceli’s website www.traumaprevention.com TRE® can have an immediate effect on the individual and long lasting effects the more it is practiced. One of the outcomes of using TRE® as a body based wellness modality is that it can bring the individual out of constant stress, tension, reactivity and fight or flight into a more calm and rational place of thinking and feeling. Yoga is also an evidence based body of healing and strengthening and has become one of the top recommended alternative healing methods by physicians, chiropractors, mental health professionals and more.

How does the TREHOUSE Project utilize research and/or best practices?

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and the Health Resources and Services Administration (SAMHSA-HRSA) stress is a pervasive problem. Between 60-80% of healthcare visits are related to stress, and an integrative approach is best. Current mental health researchers, Dr. Bessel van der Kolk and Dr. Peter Levine agree, that mental health/stress disorders are greatly benefited by using a somatic (body based) methodology. Dr. Van ker Kolk, Medical Director of The Trauma Center in Boston and Professor of Psychiatry states in his recent book “The Body Keeps the Score”, how traumatic stress literally rearranges the brain’s wiring, that these areas can be reactivated through innovative treatments . . . including mindfulness techniques, play, yoga, and other somatic therapies. Similarly, Levine’s Somatic Experiencing®, based upon an appreciation of why animals in the wild are not traumatized by routine threats to their lives, while humans, on the other hand, are readily overwhelmed and often subject to the traumatic symptoms of hyper arousal, shutdown and dysregulation.

Deb V, Board Member

Who can receive these services?

Individuals who qualify under the poverty guidelines.

How do we provide these services?

We provide education on the effects of stress, tension and trauma and evidence based – body based tools for healing.

 

We partner with our community…

See our community partners

Learn how to get involved

Corporate Sponsors

TREHOUSE Project 501(c)3

EIN 46-398621

320 Putnam Street
Eau Claire, WI 54703
715.828.3378