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“Be well to serve well.”

Offering training in mind-body contemplative practices to support the well-being of helping professionals. 

“The essence of the CBR Project is finding and fostering the power of resilience, which can come from within as well as from the power of community.”
– Sharon Salzberg, Co-creator of CBR

New Program! Resilient Leaders Network

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Why We Exist

Human and social service workers show compassion to others on a daily basis. But the work they do has risks. Human and social service professionals are under enormous pressure. Over 45% of both social workers and healthcare professionals report experiencing secondary traumatic stress (STS) which can result in anxiety, disconnection, insomnia, and depression. A 2021 study of U.S. based healthcare and social workers found that 50-60% of workers in those fields were experiencing symptoms of burnout. 

CBR is here for you. We value the work you do and recognize the role you play in transforming society. Founded in 2004, the CBR Project has served health care providers, social workers, humanitarian aid workers, legal aid workers, first responders, and others in helping professions in the United States and around the world. One of the first programs of its kind, CBR offers evidence-based tools to deepen self-awareness and self-care, so you may “be well to serve well.”  

“The CBR Women’s Leadership Retreat was the most transformative weekend I have ever had. I accessed something within myself that would be able to sustain me.”
– Madeline Garcia Bigelow, Urban Justice Center

2023 Impact

CBR worked harder than ever in 2023 to bring mindful tools for inner resilience and compassionate action to over 500 leaders, organizations, and community members who need it the most. We know that the life changing effects of contemplation ripple out from individuals to their organizations, communities, the earth, and the systems we co-create. Change starts from within!

What We Do

The Contemplative-Based Resilience (CBR) approach fosters skills to enhance and sustain resilience among participants by uniquely integrating three key components:

  • Awareness of the neurobiology and psychology of stress, its causes and impacts;
  • Balance of the body and mind through meditation, mindful movement, and emotional awareness 
  • Connection with ourselves and with the people we care for through reflection and action 

Through participating in a CBR Training, you will:

  • Develop a set of inner resources to protect you from burn-out 
  • Enhance your well-being through self-care and self-compassion
  • Learn how to serve others without losing yourself in the process

CBR is highly portable; the tools introduce simple yet powerful ways to increase self-awareness and inner resilience. When these tools are practiced on a regular basis they become healthy habits. And when leaders support their staff in practicing habits of well-being at work, everyone benefits.

As a result of participating in CBR, 100% strongly agree or agree that they:

  • are able to detect sources of stress, observe the impact it has, and better monitor reactions to stress and hardship.
  • can better regulate emotions and manage stress through compassion meditation and body-based techniques

“Amazing retreat I left with a beautiful tool kit that is helping me implement new ideas in my office and take care of myself and my team.
– CBR Participant

How We Do It

CBR Trainings can help human service professionals from all backgrounds, whether you work on the frontlines or in the office. We offer:

  • One-hour lunch-and-learn webinars  
  • “ABC’s of Resilience” staff training (CEUs available)  
  • Hybrid (in person and online) courses 
  • Retreats at The Garrison Institute
  • Leadership Institute for managers and executives
  • Guest speakers at your staff retreats

Our team will work closely with leadership to create a program that fits with your organization’s needs. A printable PDF is available here.

 “Before I attended four days of CBR Training, I did not believe in the meditation world and its result on people. But now meditation and mindful exercises are my daily habits to reduce the stress and tension.
–  CBR Participant

Who We Have Served (2018-2022)

We’ve served individuals and teams from nearly one hundred organizations, including:

Caring for Hungry & Homeless of Peekskill
Catholic Charities of Orange, Sullivan & Ulster
Childcare Councils of Orange and Westchester Counties
DC Government Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services
Doctors without Borders
International Red Cross
The Legal Aid Society
Mayor’s Office to End Gender-Based & Domestic Violence
My Sister’s Place
Putnam County Child & Family Services
Services for the Underserved
Worker Justice Center
YWCA White Plains & Central Westchester

Who Supports Us

We Thank Our Funders for Making This Work Possible!

  • The JPB Foundation (2024)
  • Westchester Community Foundation, a division of New York Community Trust (2023-2024)
  • Tianren Culture (2024)
  • The Hemera Foundation (2024)

Scientific Basis

The practices introduced in CBR are grounded in research on resilience and contemplative science. For a more in depth exploration of the research, review Teresa Sivilli and Thaddeus Pace’s paper “The Human Dimensions of Resilience.”

Download Our Free App “Care for Caregivers” Now

This app empowers caregivers with the essential practices of the CBR approach. These 8 short guided practices feature Sharon Salzberg leading meditation and Gayla Marie Stiles facilitating mindful movement. We invite you to download the app and share among your networks––whether it be with your colleagues, family or friends.

Read an op-ed in Newsweek from Sharon Salzberg and Garrison Institute’s Diana Calthorpe Rose on how the Care for Caregivers app can help essential workers reduce stress and balance mental and emotional wellbeing.

The CBR Project Team

The CBR Project brings together faculty with expertise in the fields of traumatic stress studies, psychology, meditation and mindful movement

CBR Staff

Christa Tinari
Director, CBR Project

Elisabeth Preisinger
Manager, CBR Project

CBR Senior Advisors

CBR Faculty


Contact Us

To learn more about the CBR Project or to inquire about programming, please contact us at CBRProject@garrisoninstitute.org.

To learn about Garrison Institute International and the CBR approach to humanitarian aid workers, please visit www.garrisoninstitute-int.org.