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$350.00 – $425.00

Online Course: Sustaining and Supporting Well-Being in Public Defense

March 18 – June 3, 2024

PRICE $350 for members  $425 for non members 
Need help with this registration process?  Watch this video.  


Meets Mondays at 1:00-2:15 pm Pacific/3-415 Central/4-515 Eastern.  
Course designed by Jenny Andrews.
Course faculty: Jenny Andrews, Heather Pugh, Ray Ibarra, John Lopez, Elizabeth Keeney, and additional faculty to be announced.

This course is offered by NAPD and the California Office of the State Public Defender. California defenders should register through OSPD at this link to take this course at no charge.

This ten week course is intended for anyone working in indigent defense, in any job category, who would like to increase their tools and strategies to sustain their own well-being and support the well-being of other defenders. Working in public defense has very real impacts on our well-being. Though we must maintain our physical and mental health in order to provide high quality and client-centered advocacy to the people we represent, we face constant obstacles of working within under-resourced agencies, being exposed to trauma, and handling casework demands that challenge our boundaries and rest. These resources are intended to support development of individualized strategies to sustain well-being while working in public defense, community care strategies to create public defense culture supportive of well-being, and strategies to advocate for systemic change to support indigent defense and increase access to justice.

This course includes one hour of material to review each week within the online learning management system (such as short videos to view, and articles and research to read), in preparation for a 75 minute weekly group meeting. The course will begin Monday 3/18/24, and will meet Mondays at 1:00-2:15 pm Pacific/3-415 Central/4-515 Eastern.

Here is a schedule of dates and topics:

3/18/24               Class Meeting 1: Online Materials Section 1: Introduction. Well-being as competence and access to justice. Three spheres model.

3/25/24               Class Meeting 2: Online Materials Section 2: The unique challenges of public defense work. Studies of impacts of this work. Self-assessment and goal setting.

4/1/24                  Class Meeting 3: Online Materials Section 3: Motivation, identity, and boundaries.

(4/8 no class meeting: NAPD Conference on Sustainability in Traverse City, Michigan)

4/15/24               Class Meeting 4: Online Materials Section 4: Spheres one and two: Traumatic impacts. Trauma informed public defense practice.

4/22/24               Class Meeting 5: Online Materials Section 5: Building community care. Building supportive culture. Reducing moral injury.

4/29/24               Class Meeting 6: Online Materials Section 6: Agency assessment and strategic planning for well-being. NAPD Principles. Diversity, equity and inclusion as foundational to organization wellness.

5/6/24                  Class Meeting 7: Online Materials Section 7: Building systems that support well-being through leadership, training and mentorship.

5/13/24               Class Meeting 8: Online Materials Section 8: Sphere three: External communication. Media. Budget advocacy.

5/20/24               Class Meeting 9: Online Materials Section 9: System obstacles and strategies.

(5/27 no class meeting: Memorial day)

6/3/24                 Class Meeting 10: Online Materials Section 10: Conclusion. Future plans and goals.