Announcing POCAfest 6 at Marin Headlands, September 25-27 2015!

Announcing POCAfest 6-Back To Marin Headlands!

POCA Fest Fall 2015 – Marin
Join us for the People’s Co-op of Community Acupuncture Fall 2015 conference. This fall’s POCA Fest is for punks, receptors, patient/community members, POCA supporters, students, friends and family. Last time we were at Marin we sold out and had a waiting list so don't delay

How to register?

Go here:

Theme – Liberation Acupuncture
The theme for the keynote speech for POCA Fest Marin is Liberation Acupuncture. We will look at some practical ways in which the community acupuncture model is liberatory. We will also look at the challenges of liberating acupuncture from mechanisms of domination such as neglecting oppressed people and reinforcing inequality. In particular we will consider the perspectives of Paolo Friere (Pedagogy of the Oppressed) and Ignacio Martin-Baro (Writings for a Liberation Psychology). The most important question is,  how would your practice free you more, if you let it?

Friday September 25 – Sunday September 27 2015
Friday September 25 arrive as early as 3pm to catch Friday afternoon programming.
We’ll say our goodbyes Sunday September 27, 2015 and depart the camp by 2pm.
*ONE DAY-SATURDAY or SUNDAY ONLY option:  9 to 6:00pm. Lunch included.

Headlands Institute is a beautiful historic military building located on the beach of the Pacific Ocean. It’s conveniently located just 22 miles from San Francisco International Airport or 30 miles from Oakland International Airport. Housing for the event will be onsite in dorm-style accommodations, with all meals provided for in a dining hall.
Address:  Headlands Institute
Golden Gate Natl Recreation 
Sausalito, CA 94965‎

What to Bring
Bring a towel, bedding, sunscreen, umbrella and good walking shoes.  The sleping quarters are good but spartan: there's a series of bunk beds. You have to bring bedding such as a sleeping bag and pillow. Bring a towel too along with toiletries. 

What else to bring
1. If you have a clinic bring business cards- a mess of ‘em-to exchange with other clinics. There will be a table laid out for this. Remember!  We are all in this together! Support the other POCA clinics by using the cards to refer patients!
2. T-shirt exchange! If you area clinic with t-shirts that you’d love to exchange for t-shirts from other clinics, bring ‘em! Its always fun to see all the different t-shirts we’ve made.

Vegan, vegetarian and gluten free options available. Indicate your food needs in the event registration form.

Note: The cost of attending is the same as it was three years ago! You can’t afford to NOT attend!
Punks: early bird (by August 31) $300-$500; September 1 on $350-$550
3 day pass (no overnight) $300-$500 
1 day pass Saturday or Sunday only: $100-$200; add CEUs- $75
Students: $100-$250 
Family: $150 Children 4-15 $100 
Linen Rental: $29 – Includes fitted sheet, pillow and sleeping bag. Limited sets available

Registration can be done from POCA’s homepage starting NOW
Pre-registration and payment in full is required by all participants. Registration will open at the Headlands Institute at 3pm.

POCA Fest requires pre-registration and payment in full by the participant. 
For cancellations, following the refund schedule applies: 
Up to 30 days prior to POCA Fest- 100% refund
29 to 14 days prior to POCA Fest – 50 % refund
13 days or less- no refund unless POCA Fest is cancelled because of low registration, then 100% of registration fees will be refunded.
Refunds will be issued within 30 days.

What if I have other queastions? 

1. There are several threads in the POCA forums discussing ride sharing, etc. Go there to join in.

2/. Post any questions below. 

What's the program?


3:30-4:30- Breakout 1
Intro to CA/CA 101- Skip Van Meter
Bookkeeping and Business Systems- Carmen Doerge and Steve Kingsbury
Richard Tan and Master Tung – Effective Protocol Treatments for Community Acupuncture – Mary Stewart, Julia Carpenter, and Michelle Lemieux

4:45-6 Opening and Keynote: Liberation by Lisa Rohleder


7 onwards- bonfire and hanging out



9:30 – 11:00am Breakout 2
We Can't Do This Alone: How Do You Get Support? Skip Van Meter
Speed Mentoring – Elizabeth Bruckner, Jim Lorr
Clinic Study: The Growth and Learning in Running a Clinic – Come Learn BAP’s Mistakes! – Michelle Lemieux, Julia Carpenter, Mary Stewart

Connecting with Your Co-op – Sarah Lefkowich and Elizabeth Ropp

12-1pm – LUNCH
1:15 – 2:30pm Breakout 3
Clinic Study: The OAP way – Cait Cain
Employee Panel – Moses Cooper, John Vella
Employer Discussion – Jim Lorr
Becoming a Nonprofit Panel Discussion – Tatyana Ryevzina, Pam Chang, Amy Severinsen, Olive Crane, Michelle Rivers

2:45-4:00pm Breakout 4
Women’s Leadership Group – Lisa Rohleder, Lisa Baird
Communication with Clients – Rob Singer
Clinic Study: Best Practices with Hemma – Michael Lium-Hall

4:45-6:00pm Breakout 5
When Our Patients Die – Cait Cain, Lisa Baird

Marketing Bee – Olive Crane

Bookkeeping and Accounting for CA Clinics – Carmen Doerge
Distal Strategies: Tan/Tung – Gururas Khalsa

6-7pm – DINNER
7 onwards – Bonfire



9:15-10:15am Breakout 6
Trauma Informed Care – Lisa Rohleder, Lisa Baird, Suzzanne Lohr, Adrian Grey
Reception Systems, Scripts, and Opportunities for Listening – Rachel Hess
Herbs in CA – Kerri Casey
Website, Online Scheduler and EHR Clinic – Wade Phillips

10:30-12pm Special Presentation
Neocolonial/Postcolonial Criticism in Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine –  Tyler Phan

12-1pm LUNCH
1:15 -2:00pm – All Conference Closing Session – Skip Van Meter

Short Session Descriptions

Intro to CA/CA 101
This session will create a broad framework for understanding what is and what isn't community acupuncture. It will also help you figure out what other breakout sessions during the rest of the weekend might best serve your interests and needs and where to find other resources through POCA Coop to help you start and grow your community acupuncture clinic.
Skip Van Meter

Bookkeeping and Business Systems
The business side of being a small business owner. Employees mean payroll, payroll taxes and people management. Running a small business means having good financial reporting systems. Revenue, expenses, profit and loss statements, tax returns and financial planning – Oh My! Do you do it all yourself? No, so where do you look for help? What do you, the business owner need to focus on? You have to do this stuff well for your clinic to be there for the long term for your patients. Let’s talk about all of this.

Carmen Doerge and Steve Kingsbury

Richard Tan and Master Tung–Effective Protocol Treatments for        Community Acupuncture
Join the Berkeley Acupuncture Project in a discussion of some of their favorite protocols from Richard Tan and Master Tung.  Protocols for headaches/migraines, hormone regulation (peri/menopause, fertility, PMS, irregular cycles, dysmenorrhea), trigeminal neuralgia, Bell's palsy, heart diseases (angina, CAD, etc.), psychiatric/psychological diseases (mania, depression, psychosis, panic, PTSD), allergies, IBS.  Have a case you need protocols to treat?  Come with your questions and we will answer them.
Michelle Lemieux, Julia Carpenter, Mary Stewart

Keynote: Liberation
The theme for the keynote speech for POCAfest Marin is Liberation Acupuncture. We will look at some practical ways in which the community acupuncture model is liberatory. We will also look at the challenges of liberating acupuncture from mechanisms of domination such as neglecting oppressed people and reinforcing inequality. In particular we will consider the perspectives of Paolo Friere (Pedagogy of the Oppressed) and Ignacio Martin-Baro (Writings for a Liberation Psychology). The most important question is,  how would your practice free you more, if you let it?
Lisa Rohleder

We Can’t Do This Alone. How do you get support?
For workers in a Community Acupuncture clinic, receiving support is a necessary yet radical act. It is an admission that they are on equal ground with the rest of their clinic’s community. But it’s tricky as we can be open to support from some parts of our CA community but not others. There are five groups of people in each CA community: patients, fellow workers, partner and family, friends, and the POCA community. From which can you draw support and from which do you shy away from? In this breakout, with a nod to the keynote speech, we will share our stories of how we are open to the full CA experience.
Skip Van Meter 

Speed Mentoring
Based on the book “Give and Take” by Adam Grant, this workshop would focus on connecting clinic owners with mentors.  Each participant would be given a piece of paper and pencil and instructed to write 2-3 one sentence questions that they’d like help on in their clinic.  Small groups of participants will sit with each mentor for ten minutes and hear how that mentor would suggest help for the participant's issue.  Contact information for the mentors will be available at the end of the session should participants wish you begin a mentor relationship with one of the speakers.
Elizabeth Bruckner, Jim Lorr

Clinic Study: The Growth and Learning in Running a Clinic–Come and learn from BAP’s mistakes!
Join the owners/partners of the Berkeley Acupuncture Project as we share our journey from the beginning–from initial idealism to burnout and near-death to rebuilding on a firm foundation.  At six years old, we have one of the busiest clinics in the country and we have stable wages and satisfied employees.  But we made plenty of learning mistakes along the way and we'd love for you to benefit from those.  We are happy to cover anything that we have learned the hard and the easy ways: partnership, finances, how to fairly share wages and responsibility, hiring, morale, growth, security, when to expand, when to hire, when to raise wages and why, how to share tasks or delegate them, volunteers, and how to have fun and a balanced life doing it all! Come and ask–we are here to share our journey.
Michelle Lemieux, Julia Carpenter, Mary Stewart

Clinic Study: The OAP Way

At OAP, our greatest asset is our staff of superpunks and their ability to navigate our systems and patients. In this breakout session, OAP punks and employers will discuss the process by which we find, interview, hire, shadow, train, nurture, review, discipline, reward and appreciate all our punks. Both punks and owners will get a chance to talk about how these systems benefit both parties, promote clear communication, and lead to cohesive clinic culture. Throughout this breakout session we’ll revolve around the theme that all of this is built on the foundation of taking care of our patients with simple efficient systems, healthy boundaries, and an intense focus on accessibility. All that, and we still have a lot of fun, make good money, and don’t take any s#*t. That’s the OAP way.
Cait Cain

Employee Panel
A discussion of the major issues of being an employee of a community acupuncture clinic is the topic here. Both punk and non-punk employees areas served well by identifying common issues that employees of all clinics have. Pay, management, length of shift, job requirements and expectations will be discussed.
John Vella, Moses Cooper

Employer Discussion
A group discussion of challenges and roles that clinic owners face: developing job descriptions, resolving conflicts, seeking motivation for clinic goals, and approaching the class divide.

So you got yourself decent employees,
How do you get them to reach for higher performance or take on greater stewardship of the clinic?
How do you manage when personalities clash? Maybe you don’t really like sharing your clinic space with other punks all that much. Geez, it can be so draining having to tell people what to do all the time.
Besides, few of us get paid or are trained to do HR.
Jim Lorr

How to Convert to a Nonprofit Panel Discussion
Find out why and how to convert to a nonprofit status with other punks that have made the transition.
Tatyana Ryevzina, Pam Chang, Amy Severinsen, Olive Crane, Michelle Rivers

Women’s Leadership Group
An odd thing about the acupuncture profession is that the rank and file is largely female-identified while the recognized leadership is largely male-identified. Community acupuncture is better overall, but sexism is sneaky and insidious. Women often don’t promote themselves to leadership the way that men do. If we want women leaders in POCA, we’re going to have to cultivate and encourage them. This breakout session is about how we’re going to do that.
Lisa Rohleder

Communicating with Clients
We have a lot to say in a short amount of time so it's important to use an economy of language to get your message across succinctly. We'll learn how to develop rapport with a stranger in 5 minutes or less, develop scripts to answer all their questions before they ask and how to use body language & modeling behavior to train your client base to do your bidding without saying a word. We'll cover the What, Where, When & How of communication in a CA clinic environment.
Rob Singer

Clinic Study: Best Practices with Hemma
Hemma (meaning home in Swedish)  opened its doors in the fall of 2007 and is number 18 on the POCA periodic table of community clinics.  A big little clinic (8 lazy-boys) in the town of Victoria B.C, population 80,000, Hemma was the first clinic in Canada.  Since that time she has faced her share of challenges — sharing space with a yoga studio, finding punks, slow times and red lines of credit, to name a few.  Eight years in, Hemma is running strong, carried by the strength of a founding vision to provide something we all care so much about — accessible acupuncture.  Come and hear about some of the challenges we have faced and overcome, and the ways we went about it — from strong customer service oriented focus to targeted sales.  Come and learn tips and ideas too take your clinic to the self sustaining sweet spot!  Your questions and concerns will take priority. 
Michael Lium-Hall

When Our Patients Die
Everyone dies. Working in a high-volume practice, chances are that every one of us will have occasion to mourn patients. Mainstream North American culture does not encourage us to directly confront death or dying. How can we support each other through this? How do we cope when one of our patients is dying? How do we support the families, friends & loved ones of the dead? How do we mourn & remember once they’re gone? Join Cait Cain and Lisa B for a conversation about facing mortality in the community acupuncture clinic.
Cait Cain is an employee punk at Oakland Acupuncture Project and will, one day, be buried beneath the apple tree.
Lisa B punks at Guelph Community Acupuncture. She’s planning for a green burial when she dies.

Marketing Bee
A facilitated discussion on all the best marketing approaches used by CA clinics. Marketing in CA is different than in other private clinic settings or many other businesses. Bring your best ideas to exchange with others, and bring questions/challenges to find out what works best and why.
Olive Crane

Bookkeeping and Accounting for Community Acupuncture Clinics
What does this mean and do I really have to do it? Discussion of business basics specifically for busy CA practices. Find out what systems you absolutely need to have as you set out to create sustainable living-wage jobs for yourself and other punks.
Carmen Doerge

Distal Strategies: Tan/Tung
This session focuses on acupuncture strategies for treating patients in recliners. We'll talk about point combinations, diagnostic and treatment approaches inspired by Richard Tan & Master Ching Chang Tung that can be used in community acupuncture clinics.
Gururas Khalsa

Connecting with your Co-op
New to POCA? Want to find out more? This session provides all the information you might ever want to know about POCA! Hot to connect and get involved, how POCA is structured, how volunteers connect with their home clinics – all the information is here.
Sarah Lefkowich, Elizabeth Ropp

Trauma Informed Care
In this breakout session we will continue our conversation, from the last POCA Fest, on trauma and resilience. We will utilize the Trauma Informed Approach (TIA) to help us as clinics, providers, supporters, and survivors bear better witness and provide more effective support to survivors in our clinics and our lives. We will learn and discuss the Six Key Principles of TIA and will utilize them in clinic oriented role-playing situations. Instead of Universal Precautions for Disease, we will learn Universal Precautions for Trauma in a patient setting (Examples: asking before touching, checking in with patients, and being supportive and present in a nonjudgmental way). These Universal Precautions will help us to have clear boundaries not only for ourselves as practitioners, but also for our patients who depend on us to be steady and supportive, even if we ourselves are trauma survivors.
Lisa Baird, Lisa Rohleder

Reception Systems, Scripts, and Opportunities for Listening at the Reception Desk
Being the first contact in a busy clinic is full of interesting interactions and great discussions with new and returning patients about acupuncture, the clinic, and their personal experience with both. This talk will take a close look at the systems and scripts that we use at the Urbana Acupuncture reception desk and how these valuable, simple tools facilitate a natural opportunity for listening and learning about the patient while also warmly welcoming them to the clinic, first or hundredth visit.
Rachel Hess

Herbs in CA
This class will discuss an efficient way to incorporate herbs into a community acupuncture practice. Discussion will include a breakdown of the most used herbs, their indications, and applications. Participants will be provided with a list of the most common herbs and gain knowledge on the best herbs to have on hand, and managing an inventory.
Kerri Casey

Website, Online Scheduling Service and EHR
Making good use of Web technologies is an essential part of running a successful Community Acupuncture clinic.  A comparison of existing online scheduling systems and electronic health records will be presented in this break-out.  Additionally, there will be time for discussion of other web technologies and website conundrums, so bring questions about your website issues.
Wade Phillips

Neocolonial/postcolonial criticism in acupuncture and Chinese medicine
This will primarily deal with concepts found in postcolonial discussions (discourses) such as Orientalism, subaltern studies, cultural appropriation, the ramifications of privilege, etc. It will specifically examine the socio-political climate of acupuncture in the United States.
Tyler Phan

All Conference Closing Session
How do you experience Liberation in your clinic?
Skip Van Meter

Skip Van Meter
Author: Skip Van Meter

Skip is Lead Acupuncturist and Co-Founder of <a href="" target="_blank">Working Class Acupuncture</a> in Portland, Oregon. With the earlier part of his life spent acquiring knowledge about geology, urban planning and teaching high school, he has now been an acupuncturist for 19 years, using about a 1,750,000 needles poking his patients. He likes all things soccer, has three fabulous sons, the best wife in the world, and a great dog and two cool cats.

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  1. Just registered! All the LBCA crew is heading up to Marin! Soooooo excited! Thank you POCA for all the organizing and planning and executing of millions of details large and small to make this happen:)