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'Inner Ocean Empowerment Project' Expands From Helping Health Care Workers Experiencing Stress To Those Impacted By Boulder Shooting

LAFAYETTE (CBS4) – A new Boulder-based program is helping fill the need of those healing from trauma and PTSD. It's called the "Inner Ocean Empowerment Project."

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Founder Mindy Counts told CBS4's Mekialaya White the nonprofit has grown tremendously since it was founded back in October 2020 and she couldn't be more excited.

"I am just a service junkie. I've been like that my whole life," she explained.

The program initially launched during the pandemic as a way to fill the gap for health care workers experiencing stress with counseling and holistic healing techniques. And now, it's expanded to help others in their journeys, including people impacted by the Boulder shooting.

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"The goal for me is to let people know that they are loved, that they have resources and really stop these cycles of trauma and violence that can live and grow within communities and families," said Counts. "I think what we're seeing now is the aftermath of chronic high level of stress. I think it's absolutely important that we do something now."

Addie Dupuis has benefited from it directly as a frontline healthcare worker. She says finding the program was serendipitous.

"I am almost in tears thinking about it because it just – it really felt amazing to experience that care for us. I've kind of just been thrown to the wolves in a certain respect, taking the time to take care of yourself and accepting that care from an outside source instead of being the person who is caring for others is ultimately going to make you a better healer and care provider for your patients."

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Reaching out initially may be the most difficult part, but Dupuis can confidently say it's worth it.

"We hear all the time in health care fill your cup first, you can't pour from an empty cup – self-care is so important, but when you're in the midst of a global pandemic taking care of yourself falls by the wayside as well. To take these opportunities that other people are providing me and lean into them and that is a tangible way to fill my cup to take care of myself in a very real way."

To get connected and learn more about the Inner Ocean Empowerment Project, click here:

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