Wounded Healers - A Healing-Centered Education Portrait Series & Podcast -Photography by Paper Monday

The Brave Ones
April 3, 2023

Our objective was to create a unique website featuring a horizontal scrolling functionality, allowing users to easily view and listen to the audio of each portrait. The goal was to design a seamless and engaging user experience that encourages users to learn more about each individual featured on the site.

This portrait series captures the profiles of nine educators, community leaders and practitioners, all of whom have dedicated their lives to — in some shape or form — creating spaces for others to thrive, flourish and heal. We call them the Wounded Healers.

The concept “wounded healer” finds its roots in both Carl Jung's work and in Greek mythology. For Jung, the wounded healer represented the sensitivity and understanding of one’s own wounds and how this informs helping others heal. As Wounded Healers, they use their deep understanding of trauma to create conditions for collective flourishing and know the importance of engaging in their own personal healing work to authentically be of service to others. They embrace the challenge of often working and teaching in systems that perpetuate violence and inequality, yet they are resolute in moving through the challenges to bring about a better world. The subjects of this series have dedicated their lives to helping others find wholeness, joy, and hope even as they navigate violent circumstances. They are warriors of a different kind — reflective, undaunted, and tender. Read on to learn about their lives and work.

About Dr. Angel Acosta:

Angel Acosta works to bridge the fields of leadership, social justice & mindfulness. He completed his Ed.D. in the Curriculum and Teaching Department at Teachers College, Columbia University. His research explored healing-centered education as a promising framework for educational leadership development and community care.

As a member of the 400 Years of Inequality Project, he designed the Contemplating 400 Years of Inequality Experience to support communities with understanding structural inequality through a mindfulness-based and contemplative approach. With an interest in better understanding collective trauma, he is currently collaborating with other scholars to develop group processes for collective healing.

For close to a decade, he served as a program director for the national nonprofit CFES Brilliant Pathways. In that role, he supported educational leaders and their students by facilitating leadership trainings and creating pathways to higher education. With a passion for helping young people to think globally and act locally, he directed and taught at a global leadership study abroad program in Rome through the award-winning organization Leadership exCHANGE. This opportunity to bring students from all over the world to study leadership, cross-cultural communication and social entrepreneurship inspired Angel to deepen his commitment to transformative action in the U.S.A.

After participating in the Mind and Life Institute’s Academy for Contemplative Leadership, Angel began consulting and developing learning experiences that weave leadership development with conversations about inequality and healing to support educational leaders through contemplative and restorative practices. As a former trustee for the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society, he participated as a speaker and discussant at the Asia Pacific Forum on Holistic Education in Kyoto, Japan.

Angel is a proud first-generation Dominican-American and graduate of SUNY Plattsburgh. He currently the Director of the Garrison Institute's Fellowship Program. He also serves as the Creative Director at the NYC Healing Collective, a community initiative curating work and insights at the intersection of healing, wellness, and societal transformation. Lately, he has become curious about the ways in which technology can be used as force for advancing racial equity and dismantling structural inequality.

About Paper Monday:

As a creative studio, we use portraiture andcomprehensive research to produce authenticdocuments of people and experiences within society.Our aim is to create an archive of museum-worthycontent, genuinely championing diverse stories.

Dr. Angel Acosta
- Curation and Concept

Paper Monday
- Interviews and Photographs
CultureTouch Studio - Digital Experience and Creative Producer