Empowering Women: Claiming Healthy Personal Boundaries

Join Mennonite Women USA and Dove’s Nest
Thursday and Friday, July 26-27, 2018
Barbara Weitz Community Engagement Center, Omaha, NE

“Empowering Women: Claiming Healthy Personal Boundaries”

An Intergenerational Gathering to Provide Practical Resources and Support on Healthy Boundary Management for Girls Ages 13–18 and Women of All Ages

Who should attend? Women or girls on their own or any combination of aunts, nieces, grandmothers, granddaughters, mothers, daughters, mentors, mentees, neighbors


Download Event Poster PDF Here


1:00 PM Family Patterns and Cultural Conditioning

What do healthy boundaries mean for us in this #metoo #churchtoo climate? Why do some of us easily claim healthy boundaries and others of us struggle to do so? Keynoter Jenny Castro of Mennonite Church USA Women in Leadership Project will help us understand the big picture of boundary management.

2:00–3:30 PM: Finding Your Voice
Is it really okay to be assertive or to refuse to people-please? Can we be empowered to be clear about our individual needs? Learn ways to set and model healthy boundaries. The girls’ presenter will be Kathy Haake, associate director of Dove’s Nest: Faith Communities Keeping Children and Youth Safe.

The women’s presenter will be Carol Hurst, Dove’s Nest’s Speaker Bureau member and associate professor and social work program director at Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg, VA. 

4:00–5:30 PM: Celebrating Self
What about you do you absolutely adore? This session will offer tools on gaining self-awareness, personal empowerment, and claiming positive messages about ourselves. The presenters will be Dove’s Nest’s Speaker Bureau members Carol Hurst, associate professor and social work program director at Eastern Mennonite University, for girls and Brenda Yoder, licensed mental health counselor and author, for women.

6:00–9:00 PM: Catered dinner, worship with Pastor Andrea Wall from Bethesda Mennonite Church (Jesus is a model for boundary setting!), art expression opportunities, and fellowship.

9:00 AM–Noon: Claiming It Now and Taking It Home
After an energetic wrap-up, you will work individually and in small groups to create a tangible take-home plan that names how you will claim healthy personal boundaries in your own life.


Cost: $60/person. Please register by July 16, 2018. Payment can be made through our secure website link, dovesnest.net/donate, or by check. Checks should be made payable to “Dove’s Nest” and mailed to the following address:

Dove’s Nest
5723 N 99th St
Omaha, NE 68134

Please consider a donation above $60, which would help us further fund our work at the conference and beyond. 

Register by July 10 to receive this free t-shirt. 

All general public registration scholarships have been claimed, but a limited number of scholarships remain for participants from Mennonite congregations. APPLY HERE.

Participants are responsible for travel and housing. A list of regional hotels can be found HERE. A block of rooms have been reserved at Sonesta Suites for $89 a night for a studio suite; if you are interested in staying there, follow THIS LINK to make your reservation.

On Facebook? Join the Empowering Women event page for updates and insights! Facebook

For more information, email kathy [at] dovenest.net.

  • Jenny Castro is coordinator of the Women in Leadership Project for Mennonite Church USA. She’s an educator who has worked in community and women’s health, public education and development. For the last two years Jenny has served on MC USA’s Panel on Sexual Abuse Prevention. She lives in San Antonio, Texas, with her spouse and their three children.
  • Kathy Haake is the associate director of Dove’s Nest: Faith Communities Keeping Children and Youth Safe. She has served Dove’s Nest in various capacities since 2012 and has coordinated training events across North America. Kathy, her husband, and their three children live in Lincoln, Nebraska, and are members of First Mennonite Church.
  • Carol Grace Hurst has worked as a social work clinician and social work educator for over twenty years. Her years in clinical practice focused on children, youth, and families from a predominantly family systems’ perspective. Carol currently serves as associate professor and social work program director at Eastern Mennonite University in Harrisonburg, Virginia. She holds PhD and MSW degrees in Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University and is a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW). Carol also provides clinical supervision to other clinicians, a specialty that makes her keenly aware of boundary challenges women face in the professional as well as the family arena. She and her husband, Jon Nafziger, have three sons and reside in Crozet, Virginia. They worship with Charlottesville Friends Meeting of the Baltimore Yearly Meeting Religious Society of Friends.
  • Brenda Yoder is a national speaker, author, life coach, and licensed mental health counselor (LMHC). Brenda is also former teacher and school counselor. Her ministry, Life Beyond the Picket Fence, can be found at brendayoder.com, where she authentically writes about faith, life, and family beyond the storybook image. She is a certified trainer by the FaithTrust Institute and trains and advocates for child abuse and sexual assault prevention. Brenda has been a service provider for families in foster care and domestic violence situations, and she has worked with children and teens for over twenty-five years. A mentor to women and young adults, Brenda is also a wife and mom of four children, ranging from teens to adults, and lives on a farm in Shipshewana, Indiana.
  • Pastor Andrea Wall serves as pastor of faith formation at Bethesda Mennonite Church in Henderson, Nebraska. Andrea is a graduate of Nebraska Wesleyan University and is a student of Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary. She is a mother of two. 


All general public scholarships have been claimed, but a limited number remain for women and girls from Mennonite congregations.