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Free stress-reduction workshop Jan. 17 on Fort Drum

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FORT DRUM — The Vets Peer-to-Peer Outreach Center aims to help the community here by offering a free workshop to reduce stress.

From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Jan. 17 at the Commons, Euphrates River Valley Road, Dr. Richard Brown, a psychiatrist, will host a “Breath-Body-Mind” workshop in which he will teach stress-reduction methods of slowing down breathing patterns. According to his program’s website, he has used yoga and meditative practices and qi gong (pronounced “chi kung”)for that purpose for more than 30 years. He is also a certified teacher of aikido, yoga, chi gong and meditation.

“It’s supposed to increase your energy, and resiliency to stress, and helps decrease your anxiety,” said Melissa R. Amos, the outreach center’s military, veteran and family advocate. “It’s an all-over wellness tool. Behind wellness is mental health, and there’s a large stigma with getting mental health treatment. We, as an agency, are trying to decrease that stigma.”

Ms. Amos said the outreach center wants to provide workshops such as Breath Body Mind to teach people that it may require only something as simple as different breathing techniques to relieve stress they are experiencing. The workshop is also another way, she said, that people have access to a form of wellness/mental health treatment tips, especially since the community “doesn’t have enough providers.”

She said the outreach center is trying to eliminate barriers to care, and that is why the program is free. Financial stress is then not an issue, Ms. Amos said.

“The easier we make things with more programs and resiliency-type techniques, I think it’ll help the community as a whole,” she said.

As of Wednesday, the center had neared its minimum requirement of 100 people. Since all three ballrooms at the Commons are reserved, Ms. Amos said, many more can be accommodated. Reservations are requested by Friday by calling Ms. Amos at 681-6772.

Lunch will be provided, but participants are asked to bring a water bottle and exercise mat, if they have one, or towel.

For more information about Dr. Brown, visit www.have ahealthymind.com.

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