Grant M. Waldman, PhD Eco-Psychology Candidate, MA, CCC (12782), CIAS III
Grant’s areas of specialization:
▪ Trauma & Addictions
▪ Men’s Issues
▪ Indigenous Healing
Born in London, ON, to parents of Eastern European descent, the middle of three sons, I was raised in Toronto for most of my early development years. As a graduate from York University with degrees in History and Business Administration, and an advanced diploma in IT Systems from The Honeywell Institute in the 1980’s/90’s in Toronto, I worked in business development, operations management and international marketing.
Inspired by the majesty and beauty of Western Canadian mountains and oceanfront ~ the love of my life, life and business partner, Annik Moyal-Waldman, with whom I am married for over 30 years, and our beloved son, Nathaniel, fulfilled our dream to move to BC, Canada in 2003. Our family lived in the beautiful Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Island of BC, for most of our years in Western Canada. Our 24-year-old son, Nathaniel, originally born in Indianapolis, IN, is a graduate of The University of Victoria. He now works in the technology/communications field in Victoria, BC, as he pursues advanced studies.
Motivated to heal my ancestral trauma, I became involved in Men’s groups in Indianapolis, IN, Toronto, ON, and the Sunshine Coast, BC. I had the opportunity to witness first-hand the ‘pebble-in-the-pond’ reverberations of healing that occurred whenever a man did his inner work. These positive effects of healing reverberate not only upon the man himself, but upon his partner, family, and indeed, his entire community. The act of reaching out for help is a deeply courageous act, especially for men, as most of us, are conditioned to self-isolate and suffer in silence.
Initiated in The Mankind Project (MKP) in the Spring of 2006, I have been involved with the men’s movement for almost 25 years. I served on the Board of The Mankind Project for two years as the Vancouver Island representative and previously, as the Integration Group Chair. This work was so deeply transformative for me personally that I have felt called to introduce countless men to join me in sitting in local men's circles, both on Vancouver Island, and in our new N. Okanagan community, and to participate in the New Warrior Training Adventure that takes place three to five times per year in BC. These transformative outdoor leadership adventures teach men about the importance of integrity, responsibility, accountability. I get to continually see that a man’s life can literally be saved through such a simple act as sitting in circle. Repeatedly, I have been awed to witness the magic of healing and transformation.
In 2008, motivated to offer our son a Rites of Passage experience, I founded Boys to Men - Western Canada. Intent on gifting our son with an opportunity to pursue his healing work when young, rather than having to wait till his 40’s, as I had done, a team of colleagues from my men’s community and I delivered a program now called Fire & Bones. This program has historically provided mentoring for boys in schools. Both the school program and the Rites of Passage Adventure Weekend are a safe place for adolescent boys to speak their truth and learn to respect and trust self and others. It is a place where young men can be inspired to learn how to be a man of integrity, responsibility and accountability. Around this time, I lead/co-lead several weekend mentoring workshops for men that supported their connection with their own inner teenage fire. This offered our team of men the vital tools needed to successfully mentor our young men. Additionally, I felt honoured to support the Young Men's Adventure Weekend that takes place every July in the Vancouver region in BC.
In 2009, I served as the Executive Director of a non-profit I co-founded called West Coat Men’s Support Society (WCMSS). Here, I began supporting men with peer-based counselling, encouraging them to live their healthiest, most happy lives! At the suggestion of my spouse who observed that I was my most joyful, engaged and passionate self while serving men, I chose to channel my love and passion for supporting men and their families into a career as a helping professional.
Eager to follow my true calling as a helping professional and inspired to deepen my areas of gift, I completed certificates in Narrative Therapy, Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), Suicide Prevention, Intervention, Postvention and Community Safety. I then felt honoured to have studied under the auspices of Dr. Jed Diamond in an inaugural Men’s Health Training program.
In 2013, I pursued my M.A. in Counselling Psychology at Yorkville University. Prior to graduating, I undertook a practicum at The Cowichan Tribes Counselling, while coordinating a parenting program for men on a part-time basis at the Duncan, BC House of Friendship. The beauty, wisdom and gentleness of the First Nations culture and their deep connection with Mother Earth really spoke to me, personally. Following graduation, I furthered my education with certificates in: Humanitarian Response to Natural Disasters and Conflict, Community First Aid and the Journey to Wellness - Trauma & Shame.
In 2015, I graduated with my M.A. in Counselling Psychology, and in Autumn of 2016, I embarked upon my PhD., studying Eco-Psychology at Project Nature Connect which is affiliated with Akamai University in Hawaii. By late 2016, honoured to be invited to work at the world-renowned Round Lake Treatment Centre (RLTC) in the Okanagan Valley where ‘Culture is Treatment’ and always eager for our next grand adventure, Annik & I moved to the Northern Okanagan region. Since early 2017, I served as a Wellness Facilitator/Counsellor in RLTC's Indigenous treatment program. I assisted clients to heal wounds associated with ancestral trauma (i.e., abuse, addiction, grief, loss and shame). I also supported RLTC's Recovery Home for over a year as Clinical Counsellor. I am looking forward to completing my PhD by 2022.
As a helping professional, I use a trauma-informed approach to support you. I am highly attuned, attached, connecting, heart-centred, empathetic, compassionate and understanding. I focus on your strengths and help you to move through necessary changes in a solution-focused, client-centred manner. It is important to keep in mind that healing takes as long as it takes. It is also important to remember that we can only work on one issue at a time for optimum understanding and healing to happen. By using active listening skills to affirm your story, we will arrive at a treatment plan that best supports your healing journey. It is important to me that you receive the best results based on your specific needs, schedule and budget.
Another important aspect of my life's calling is my music. I am an accomplished and published singer-songwriter-poet who released my first CD titled “Waldo Wants to Wake-up the World" in 2002. I perform at local Vernon coffee houses, in addition to other functions, including MKP graduation ceremonies, Baha’i’ events, Jewish events, environmental and peace causes. I have additionally published a book of prose. Both my CD and book can be found on Amazon. I enjoy all that the west coast has to offer with my beautiful family, including kayaking, biking, golfing, tennis, skiing, and hiking!