Ranji Ariaratnam

Ranji Ariaratnam

Ranjana (Ranji) Ariaratnam is passionate about holding space for people who want to deepen their self-care and to heal themselves, whether from the stresses of daily life or the repercussions of more momentous events.  Ranji’s approach is to combine practices which she has found very healing in her own life – each addressing different layers of our being.  She is committed to helping people reach more of their potential.

Ranji focused her graduate studies in community planning for refugees and refugee and human rights law, subsequently working in several countries with people displaced by conflict in roles such as Program Coordinator, (Human Rights) Protection Coordinator, Protection Technical Advisor, and Deputy Director.

After spending years overseas as a humanitarian aid worker in more than 10 countries, Ranji was searching for practices that were transformative and could address the conditions which led people to be displaced by wars in the first place. This search led her to NVC, first introduced to her by her Ammah (‘mother’ in Tamil) in 2005, in which she, together with her partner David, immersed herself for two years of intensive training with BayNVC, completing among numerous other trainings, the Leadership Program in 2009 and the year-long Mediation Program in 2008-09.  After a dear friend heard about TRE®, she suggested Ranji explore it as another possible way in which she could increase her capacity to hold space for people to heal themselves. This led her to train in TRE®, which together with NVC, she finds complement very well her practices of yoga and Vipassana meditation.

Ranji has been teaching NVC since 2009.  In addition to private sessions, examples of work she has done include:

  • Ongoing NVC training and mediation for staff of a democratic school in Vancouver allowing them to have a shared language for addressing issues and conflict
  • Ongoing NVC workshops and series for parents of two schools in Vancouver giving them tools to resource themselves and foster the types of relationships they long for
  • NVC training for Yoga Outreach volunteers
  • NVC workshops and series for staff at social services organisations in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside providing tools to address conflict with clients in safe and empathic ways
  • NVC workshops for activists and community members in northern Sri Lanka
  • Plus, she has been a member of the teaching team for BayNVC’s Living Peace retreat in California for 6 years

As a Certified TRE® Provider, Ranji has shared TRE® with individuals, groups and organisations in Canada, the US and England (as well as via Skype with people in other countries), and in northern Sri Lanka to support people there recovering from the war. In addition to her work in North America, she intends to continue working in other war-affected regions of the world bringing together her previous experience as a humanitarian aid worker with her NVC & TRE® training in order to support traumatized communities, frontline workers, and local TRE® providers – addressing in particular intergenerational trauma which she sees as at the base of so much of the violence in the world.


Ranji & David provide a space that offers such a supportive, safe and extremely comfortable environment to learn, heal & practice self-connection…..while there, and after I leave, I feel very at peace, revitalized, re-energized, calmer, happier and truly like I am making progress in my quest to become more self-connected, as well as a better parent, and a better human being.

TRE has helped with my body pain & helps me feel relaxed and rested, calm and at peace.  It is most definitely a way to care for yourself.  Great for the physical body & the mind!  Ranji has a wonderful way of explaining things, is very knowledgeable and caring.

– Angela Erquicia, Vancouver, BC


I started NVC to build my skills, to be the best parent I could be, to my 10 year old son.  Through my time with David & Ranji, I have started to learn ways to interact and communicate my feelings and needs with compassion for others feelings and needs.  The skills they have taught me have supported me in my relationships with my friends, my son and in my work place.

In addition to NVC, I also learned TRE from Ranji.  Ranji is an easy person to be around!  She is calm, self aware and very supportive in learning this practice.  She gives in depth sessions with the background, the physiological aspects of TRE, and helps you to learn how to use this as a tool in your day-to-day life.

I feel so relaxed and calm after TRE.  The more I do it, the more I notice when I am not calm or relaxed.   Then I can use strategies to get myself back to a calm and relaxed state and find I can go forward in a more loving and caring way.

David & Ranji share their knowledge in a way that makes it easy to understand and leaves you wanting more.    The environment is welcoming, accepting and all inclusive.

– Shirley Ann Harris, Vancouver, BC


I had been able to get the tremors going on my own, but working on Skype with Ranji took this practice to a new level for me. She invited and guided me in moving into different positions to find deeper levels of comfort and allow tremors to travel into new areas and with more fluidity… Even though I’m familiar with trusting my body’s wisdom and regularly practice it in my life, her discerning witness to my process sweetly supported me to embrace more fully the empowerment that comes from truly respecting life as it flows through me. Ranji is a superb witness and sensitive coach.

Several years after I was introduced to TRE my home and half the homes in my community burned in a wildfire [the Butte fire in the Fall of 2015]. Ranji reminded me to shake. This made a huge difference to my ability to release the initial shock, integrate other forms of healing that were supporting me, and to let each opportunity of spontaneous tremoring complete itself on the spot. Months later, I gratefully turn to shaking when the uncertainty of my future overwhelms my ability to take the next step in rebuilding my life.

– Susan Holper, Mediator and Body Mind Practitioner, Mountain Ranch, CA

Ranji Ariaratnam

Talli Jackson

Talli Jackson has worked as a professional dancer in New York City for the last 10 years. A lifelong mover, he fell in love with the performing art when, at thirteen, he saw a performance by Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and was deeply moved, experiencing beauty that seemed at once embodied and transcendent. This and other experiences have helped to instill in Talli faith in the capacity of the arts to facilitate connection, healing, and renewal.
Since 2009 Talli has danced with the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company, touring across the US, Europe and Asia, performing works of rigor and social significance with topics ranging from Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War, to John Cage and his experiments with Indeterminacy, to the life of an aid-worker in the French Resistance during WWII.
Talli was first introduced to Non-Violent Communication in 2005 by a family friend, and while he wasn’t immediately attracted to the structures of language offered, certain things resonated, like the idea of human needs being shared among all people, its articulation of how our language and thoughts shape our experiences, the humanity and dignity of children, and the possibility for us to live lives of far deeper peace and connection with each other and the broader world.

After being introduced to NVC, Talli eventually found his way to the Bay NVC Leadership Program in 2008. Since then he has focused on integrating the practices of NVC into his personal life and has had the pleasure and privilege of assisting retreats on the east and west coasts of the US.

As a teacher of dance, Talli has worked with students in studios, colleges and universities across the United States and Europe, teaching classes in contemporary technique, Contact Improvisation-inspired partnering, improvisation, and choreographic methods, as well as co-designing and leading week-long intensives for the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Co. His approaches to teaching and consciously shaping learning environments have been profoundly affected by his engagement with NVC, leading him to seek to create spaces where focus is shifted from imperatives of judgement and fear of punishment to ones of curiosity, delight, and exploration.

David Johnson

David Johnson

David’s graduate studies were in water and sanitation engineering for developing countries, after which he worked in many countries in Central America, Africa and Asia on water systems in returnee villages and camps for displaced people and refugees.  Working in war zones with conflict-affected people, he faced trauma during his time overseas.  Throughout these years he saw time and again that the challenges, and even failure, of a water program hinged less on the technical aspects of the project than on solid communication and understanding between everyone involved.  This experience overseas fed into his search for a transformative approach to communication, something he has found in NVC.  Together with his partner Ranji, David immersed himself in the study of NVC – among many other trainings he completed the BayNVC Leadership Program in 2009 as well as the year long NVC Mediation Program in 2008-09.  He has been teaching since 2011 in both California and British Columbia, working with schools and social service organisations and is now beginning to take NVC back to the developing world.

In addition to private sessions, examples of NVC work David has done include:

  • Ongoing NVC training and mediation for staff of a democratic school in Vancouver allowing them to have a shared language for addressing issues and conflict
  • Ongoing NVC workshops and series for parents of two schools in Vancouver giving them tools to resource themselves and foster the types of relationships they long for
  • NVC training for Yoga Outreach volunteers
  • NVC workshops and series for staff at social services organisations in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside providing tools to address conflict with clients in safe and empathic ways
  • NVC workshops for activists and community members in northern Sri Lanka
  • Plus, he has been a member of the teaching team for BayNVC’s Living Peace retreat in California for 6 years

David is passionate about the potential of NVC to helping people overcome self-imposed limitations and to become their full selves.

In addition to sharing NVC, David reads tomes (yes he is still carries around big books, not yet ready to make the leap to eBooks), enjoys learning languages, writes about his life overseas, does yoga (he is 200-hour certified as a teacher), and still spends a surprising amount of time studying and playing chess. The fun, clowning side of him that shows up during the parties at the end of NVC retreats often surprises people – and they all enjoy good laughs!

TRE and NVC with Ranji & David is part of how I take care of myself.  I am coming out of a very challenging stage in my life and both the TRE and NVC are helping me recover my functioning and nurture myself so I am able to grow.  NVC gives me a language to think and talk about the actual needs that I have at the moment, and the needs of others around me.  It helps me to keep myself from being caught in unproductive ways of thinking about problems and situations.   TRE is part of integrating changes into my whole being, so I can hold on to changes that I make.

In addition, Ranji & David have been important supports for me as I heal the generational trauma related to the residential school legacy in my family.  Trauma passed on through my parent’s experiences has affected me my whole life.  The combined TRE and NVC practices that I have learned from Ranji & David, supported by their calm and patient presence, have helped me identify and meet my own needs and release the trauma from the various levels of my self.  Plus, I have hope of not passing this trauma on to my children, and tools for supporting them in their healing as well!

– Cheryl Burdick, mother and teacher in training, Vancouver, BC


The NVC approach, led by Ranji & David, has supported me a great deal in my relationships with the students at our school, with the staff and also in my personal life.   The work we have done as a group has strengthened and supported my ability to be open to others’ perspectives and points of view.  It has given me more compassion and empathy towards others and has helped me to listen intently to what the other person is saying with the goal of understanding and really hearing what it is they are communicating to me….  We have done some NVC work in the past, and I know that Ranji & David have made all the difference for me.  They work solidly together to form trust and understanding that is felt by the group.

– Teacher, School, North Vancouver, BC


Working full time and being the mother of a young child, it can be difficult for me to justify spending 3-4 hours in a workshop on a weekend, away from my family. However, my classes with Ranji & David are always well worth the time. They are excellent facilitators, combining humour with deep compassion and care as they guide us through the material. After each session I am calmer and more grounded, nourished by a strong sense of community. NVC and TRE provide me with critical insights and new tools to make small yet meaningful changes in the way I approach challenges in my life. The results are incremental, but definitely noticeable: I have more clarity about my needs and am able to ask for what I need more easily. Things are improving around me and with each session I become more hopeful about the future.

– Barbara S., actuarial educator, Vancouver, BC


David’s modelling of giving me empathy was profound. I give you big thanks for this! I got to directly experience a very accomplished session… a safe container to experience and practice.

– D.S., Chico, CA

Roxy Manning

Roxy Manning, Ph.D., a licensed clinical psychologist and CNVC Certified Trainer, is the Executive Director of BayNVC. She is also the lead trainer for BayNVC’s NVC Leadership Program and is co-founder and trainer for the NVC and Nonviolent Leadership for Social Justice Retreat (formerly known as the NVC Diversity Retreat). Roxy has been using NVC in her psychotherapy practice since 2003, and has been formally teaching NVC since 2005. Roxy also currently works part time as a psychologist with the City and County of San Francisco’s Disability Evaluation and Consultation Unit.

In addition to supporting clinicians and others seeking to improve their ability to serve individuals from diverse backgrounds, Roxy has worked directly with programs and people working towards individual and social change nationally and internationally.

Within the United States, Roxy’s work includes:

  • Coaching mental health staff at a large government agency through severe conflict that had previously resulted in legal action
  • Training direct service staff at Nashville’s Public Health Department in ways to increase engagement with the families they serve
  • Leading workshops on race and facilitating cross-racial dialogues at the Gandhi Institute that resulted in an ongoing initiative to address racial tension within the Institute’s home city of Rochester, NY

Internationally, Roxy’s social change efforts includes:

  • Supporting former rebel soldiers working for grass-roots peace organizations in Sri Lanka in finding new ways to nurture peace in their communities
  • Coaching artists seeking to contribute to greater acceptance of homosexuality in Japan
  • Holding dialogues with those interested in examining growing racial tension within The Netherlands
  • Supporting the acquisition and deepening of Nonviolent Communication with both direct service providers (including principals, teachers and therapists) and members of the public in Poland.

Roxy has combined her life experience as an Afro-Caribbean immigrant with her extensive academic and professional training into a passion for supporting both larger social change and individual healing and growth.

I facilitate NVC workshops, coach NVC one-on-one and am an NVC-and-Focusing-oriented psychotherapist in private practice. I have worked with Roxy in person as a trainer, and on the phone for case consultations and other NVC and psychotherapy-related support. Every time, I am wowed and touched by her presence, her “hit the nail right on the head” reflections, and her meaningful and useful suggestions. I feel grateful and fulfilled every time we consult. I am so glad Roxy is available to me as a resource because I value the support and learning, especially since I am isolated as an NVC-oriented professional because of limited access to NVC peers.

– Shulamit Berlevtov, Canada


If you wish to deepen your awareness of how NVC works in a therapeutic setting, and want exploration, curiosity, and more complex insights, have Roxy facilitate a session. The richness of her coaching far surpasses any expectations one might have.

– M.A., Sunnyvale, CA


What I like most about Roxy is her modeling of transparent, authentic leadership. For me this has been an amazing support to feel safe to rest into being myself, and to from there explore my full potential. Her gentle, natural way of teaching profound concepts makes learning advanced NVC skills a true delight.

– A.K., Stuttgart, Germany


Roxy is extremely perceptive. She helped my husband and me gain clarity about what we wanted and how we wanted to be in our relationship. Working with Roxy has helped us tackle some difficult issues, and has given us better communication skills and capability to work through our issues on our own.

– S.F., Mountain View, CA

Our trainers are dedicated professionals who have extensive experience supporting people who have been exposed to trauma. They understand, from personal experience, the difficulty many providers face in maintaining resiliency and attending to self-care while helping those facing challenging life conditions. Join us, and get the support you need to continue to bring your gifts to support the world.