Allender Center certificates

Certificate in Narrative Focused Trauma Care Level I

The Allender Center is committed to training professional therapists, lay counselors, ministry leaders, and advocates to work on behalf of healing and redemption through story—beginning with their own. Certificate in Narrative Focused Trauma Care Level I is rooted in trauma-focused narrative therapy, and our unique group experience emboldens practitioners and leaders to facilitate healing through engaging the core wounding and deep beauty of the heart with courage and compassion.

Join Dr. Dan Allender and The Allender Center Teaching Staff in Seattle over the course of 4 intensive weekends as we learn to access the greatest gift we have to offer others: our presence. The Certificate in Narrative Focused Trauma Care Level I is an immersive, life-changing experience. We train our participants to foster healing by inviting them to participate in the healing process themselves, in community with other practitioners, under the leadership of a seasoned facilitator.

This program is uniquely designed to develop the capacity to offer deep listening and healing care for lay and professional counselors, leaders, advocates, and helpers working in a wide variety of contexts.

We offer a Clinical Track specifically designed for professional counselors, therapists, psychologists, and social workers. Participants working within these realms may express their interest in this track when applying.

About Certificate in Narrative Focused Trauma Care Level I

We have the courage to believe that redemption is possible—even in the face of betrayal, pain, abuse, and trauma. Dr. Dan Allender and The Allender Center community have been prayerfully offering deep, intensive experiences that lead to lasting change for more than 30 years. Our Certificate in Narrative Focused Trauma Care is missional, because the world is in need of kind, courageous leaders who can offer deep care for the sake of healing, freedom, and redemption.

Lasting change requires the capacity to understand and delve into the complex realms of the human condition. Our specialized tracks are designed to tailor the teaching material and group work for a diverse array of leaders and practitioners caring for people in a variety of contexts—from professional counseling settings to church communities, and nonprofit organizations to business settings.

Dr. Dan Allender has been developing a theory of change and a method for engaging the nuanced impact of trauma and abuse for more than 40 years.

Certificate in Narrative Focused Trauma Care Level I engages these categories through in-depth teaching from Dr. Dan Allender and our Teaching Staff that emphasizes: the nature of story; the impact of trauma and abuse; neurobiology; attachment; the biblical narrative; the categories of faith, hope, and love; family of origin; and the interplay of trauma, theology, and spiritual formation.

Our Certificate in Narrative Focused Trauma Care Level I takes place on campus in Seattle, WA over the course of four intensive weekends:

2019-2020 cohort

September 26-29, 2019 – Session 1
November 14-17, 2019 – Session 2
January 23-26, 2020 – Session 3
March 19-22, 2020 – Session 4

2020-2021 cohort

September 24-27, 2020 – Session 1
November 12-15, 2020 – Session 2
January 14-17, 2021 – Session 3
March 18-21, 2021 – Session 4

Each session runs on a similar schedule beginning Thursday morning at 8:00am and ending Sunday afternoon at 12:30pm, except the fourth and final weekend, which ends at 1:30pm. A detailed schedule for the 2019-20 cohort will be provided at the time of enrollment.


The Allender Theory is characterized by narrative-focused trauma therapy. We begin with narrative—our foundational origin stories—and consider each through the lens of faith, hope, love, and calling.

Session 1—Faith, Hope and Love: Learning the Components of the Story

Learn about the power of engaging narrative while growing in awareness of your own story and increase your capacity to support and care well for others.

Session 2—Faith: Bridging the Gap Between the Present and Past

Gain a deeper understanding of the ways in which your family of origin impacts your style of being, relating, and leading.

Session 3—Hope: Bridging the Gap Between the Past and the Future

Become empowered to boldly step into the sacred realm of sexuality and desire in order to offer kindness and care to these revealing stories.

Session 4—Love: Revisiting the Present in Light of the Future

Develop an integrated view of the intersection of your story, God’s story, and your calling to uniquely bless the world.

Continuing Education Units

Participants in the Certificate in Narrative Focused Trauma Care Level I at The Allender Center receive a certificate of completion verifying 100 seat hours (60 hours of teaching, 40 hours of group work). Participants may apply for recognition of these hours for CEU credit with their respective licensing bodies. The Allender Center is an organization housed within The Seattle School of Theology & Psychology. The Seattle School is accredited by the Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools (ATS), is authorized by the Washington Student Achievement Council, and meets the requirements and minimum education standards established for degree-granting institutions under the Degree-Granting Institution Act.

The Allender Center at The Seattle School will not be held responsible for professional licensing boards or states that do not recognize the requested CEUs.

Program Details & Application Process