About 'Womb Surround' Process Workshops

What is a 'Womb Surround' Process Workshop?

A 'Womb Surround' Process Workshop is a small group format developed and refined by Raymond Castellino since 1992. It creates a safe, welcoming environment in which to explore early imprinting from preverbal life that is affecting your present life. Typically there are 7 participants in a workshop. Dr. Castellino is often assisted by trainees or graduates from his Foundation Training.

The format for this was created by Dr. Castellino because he has found by experience that complete and lasting transformations most often happen in a small group setting. The span of four days or an evening plus four days allows the work to occur in a spacious way that supports the integration of material from your own and others' work.

Dr. Castellino begins each workshop reviewing basic interactive, empathy and contact skills so that participants are actively able to support each other during the workshop with the intention of creating a safe and nurturing "womb surround." Each participant receives a 1.5 - 3.5 hour session with Dr. Castellino with group support during which he or she explores physical and emotional patterns of prenatal, birth or infancy origin. Each session is followed by individual and group debriefing, integrative processing and discussion. Tools used include group interactive processes, energy awareness, craniosacral work and other touch and empathy skills.

The purpose is to heal and re-pattern early trauma and to create more options for current behavior and ways of being in relationship. In addition to healing prenatal, birth and other early trauma, this process has the principle impact of encouraging loving bonding within primary relationships. Participants commonly state that the process is transformational on a deep level.

The Format of the 'Womb Surround' Process Workshop

The actual format is as follows: The first segment of the workshop (approximately 3 to 4 hours) is spent with participants sharing intentions and Ray establishing the principles and structure that will make it possible to share and receive at a deep resourced level. Then, over the course of the workshop, each person has a turn, one at a time, during which the whole group, led by Ray, focuses on supporting the participant to explore some aspect of preverbal life. Each step is taken with consciousness, permission from the turn person and with a goal of supporting the turn person's intention as they explore this early material. In this format Dr. Castellino is facilitating not only the individual turn person, but also the other members of the group and interactions between everyone present.

The methods used to facilitate each turn are determined by the intention and needs of the turn person. Here is what is consistent: First there is a group process to determine who will be the turn person. The rest of the group will be the surround. The whole group is involved in this decision in order to insure that everyone is on board to support the turn person. Once the turn person is determined, Ray rereads the turn person's forms and the turn person affirms his or her turn. Ray and the group then listen to the turn person's story. Ray asks questions pertinent to the person's exploration, coaches the person through slow movement patterns, uses gentle touch and makes suggestions to the turn person and the group for interactive exercises.

During sessions Dr. Castellino coaches the surround members to support each other and the turn person. He suggests that surround members use the same kind of attention that they would as if they were holding a newborn baby.

Dr. Castellino's intention for the turn person is to support him or her to relax into body memories from some aspect of his or her early experience: for example, birth. Dr. Castellino guides the turn person and the group to interact at a very slow tempo so that each person present and especially the turn person are supported to integrate or make sense of the early body memories. For example, as the turn person relaxes into a memory, his or her body begins to move in such a way as to allow the unique movement patterns that the person may have actually moved through during his or her birth. The group quietly and gently holds the turn person so that he or she can move through the birth pattern in a very conscious and integrated way. Doing this at a slow tempo, with warmth, contact and support, repatterns the experience for the turn person. The whole group is working together as a team in a very respectful gentle atmosphere as if they were at a birth.

In choosing suggestions to make during sessions, Dr. Castellino draws from four decades of experience in craniosacral therapy, polarity therapy, group and family dynamics, somatic experiencing (a body-oriented approach to trauma resolution), play therapy, movement therapy, working with repatterning ancestral imprints and body biomechanics. He has combed through midwifery and obstetrics literature from before the turn of the 20th Century to the present studying birthing procedures from midwifery, nursing and obstetric points of view. In addition he has facilitated thousands of adults and children in exploring their early lives.

As the turn person reveals his or her history, Dr. Castellino uses this knowledge to help the turn person develop a plausible and coherent story out of his or her history. As this happens, Ray helps the turn person realize how these early imprints led to adaptive behaviors that have affected him or her throughout his or her life and how these adaptations to the original trauma have been useful. Participants often discover the limitation of the adaptive behaviors. The process itself opens new possibilities for a broader spectrum of choices in their lives.

Not all participants explore their birth process. Some explore an aspect of ancestral influences, conception, pregnancy, hospitalization after birth, the twin experience, family dynamics of their birth family, adoption or any other events or family patterns that affected them strongly.

At the end of each turn, the surround members are asked to share a brief essence statement of how the turn person's work touched them.

It is usual for the sessions to end with the whole group in awe and reverence for the sanctity of the turn person's journey and for life itself.

Each morning there is a group check-in and a debriefing of the previous day's session by Dr. Castellino. (The last day's sessions are debriefed during closure). The purpose of these discussions is to facilitate the integration of the sessions. When the group is in session, the participants are in experiential right-brain mode. During the debriefing following the sessions, participants are in more of a cognitive left-brain mode.

During closure, Dr. Castellino recommends specific activities for the next month to support the participants in the integration of their experiences from the workshop. These include contact with other members of the group, professional support, and suggestions for ways to integrate their new perceptions, needs and ways of being with their families and communities.

At the end of the workshop as part of the closure activities Dr. Castellino shows a slide show with music that includes pictures taken during the workshop.

Who Attends a 'Womb Surround' Process Workshop?

For the foreseeable future, anyone who is ready for or who has experience with group process work is welcome to attend.

This workshop is also recommended for professionals as a means to personally experience the profound changes possible with this approach. Those who come with particular skills are encouraged to use them in the group setting. Participants leave with deeper levels of awareness, directly related to prenatal and birth processes, applicable to any professional practice. Many report using their new perceptions and skills in their practices.

This workshop is equally valuable to persons who chose to take it primarily for personal growth and healing.

Couples, pregnant mothers, mothers/fathers and their adult children often take this workshop as well as professionals.

Individuals who are not ready for group process work are best served by individual sessions with Dr. Castellino, therapy in another setting or both. Parents of infants/young children will find private sessions more appropriate.

One womb surround process workshop is a prerequisite to applying to the Castellino Prenatal and Birth Therapy Foundation Training that is completed over a two-year period in eight six-day modules. In addition to the eight training modules, four womb surround process workshops are required to graduate from the Foundation Training.


This was one of the most profound workshops that I have participated in. As someone who facilitates groups myself, I was so pleased and impressed at the quality of presence and the container that Ray, Frank and Kristin created. It was a true womb and already the impact of this extraordinary work is reverberating through my life. Thank you and blessings"

Holly Hamilton, LMT, DD

This workshop was truly transformative. I have done years of therpay and have not felt so guided into my own original wounds as masterfully as with Ray

Marlena deCarion, PCC

Finally! After 35 years as a professional counselor, I found the integration of modalities, body-centered and more that give real solution to lifelong, destructive patterns of meeting life. Dr. Castellino is a gifted master teacher and therapist.

Cristina Casanova, psychotherapist

Ray's Process Workshop is one of the most profound, healing and informative workshops I've ever experienced. His principles ensured the safety and integrity of the experience. The way he prepares the surround to receive and support the participant is masterful. His structure for checking in negotiating turns and sharing after each turn informed and deepened the process. This is an experience I will never forget. I look forward to seeing how my INTENTIONS unfold into everyday practice.

Priscilla Chaveyz-Reilly, M.S., retired head of NYC guidance counselors

The workshop has led me to parts of me which have remained hidden and I am grateful to have the space in which to name them. The change within me is more than I can name.

John Aufterheide, BEBA father

I have no words to describe what this workshop did. It is still settling. But I feel like I peeled off another layer of my mask and I am a more real person. I feel so empowered from deep within me, like I found my fulcrum.

Annapurna Jonnalagedda, SE student and homemaker

Honestly, I didn't and haven't seen any way in which the experience could have been better, more complete, more thorough, deeper, more inspiring, revealing, more incisive, intimate, evocative or fun. I can assure you, this is a first for this guy, who wants everything to be the best it can possibly be and always sees where improvement is possible.

Mike Brenner, MD

This workshop gets to layers of healing and connection in a deeper, safer, and more effective way than I have ever experienced. You really "get" how to be fully human.

Ariella Morris, LCSW, MSW

Upcoming 'Womb Surround' Process Workshops

The 2020 workshops listed below are ZOOM womb surrounds and are co-facilitated by Raymond Castellino and a facilitator-in-training. These womb surrounds are OPEN TO ANYONE. Ray would like to have contact with participants before signing up for a ZOOM womb surround. The contact can be a private session, previous work with Ray or a short interview after submitting a form and photo.

For workshops by graduates of Ray's training, see the bottom of this page.

To receive periodic updates about upcoming WOMB SURROUND Process Workshops, please subscribe to our mailing list:

October 1-4 on ZOOM
3.5 days:
Starts: 8:15 am PDT
Ends: last day is no more than 3 hours
For 4 people.
Co-facilitated by Raymond Castellino, DC(ret), RPE, RCST and Natalie Garvey, LM, CPM, facilitator in training
Wait List Only
$1295/$1195 (with 2 possible $50 discounts)



October 15-18 on ZOOM
3.5 days:
Starts: to be determined by who signs up
Ends: last day is no more than 3 hours
For 4 people.
Co-facilitated by Raymond Castellino, DC(ret), RPE, RCST and Shana Walt, RCST, CMSTC, facilitator in training
$1295/$1195 (with 2 possible $50 discounts)



January 29-Februray 2, 2021 in Ojai
4 full days + 2/3 day:
Starts 8:45 am, Friday
Ends by 2 pm, Tuesday
For 6 people.
Co-facilitated by Raymond Castellino, DC(ret), RPE, RCST and Gitte Larsen, RPP, RPE, facilitator in training
Ojai, CA
Wait List Only
Priority to healthcare/bodywork professionals. Anyone may apply to be on the wait list.



Zoom workshops will be offered as long as in-person workshops are not legally allowed.

$210/$200 non-refundable deposit holds your place: $210 if paying via credit card or paypal, $200 if paying via cash, check or MO.

Discounts Available

  • $50 discount for early payment in full
    • for those signing up less than 2 months in advance:
      • if payment in full by credit card or paypal the day of signing up. Paypal address is sandra@castellinotraining.com. For credit card, ask Sandra to bill you through Square and pay online.
      • OR if check or money order for full price is postmarked by the day after signing up.
    • for those signing up more than 2 months in advance:
      • if payment in full is received by 2 months ahead
      • OR if check or money order is POSTMARKED by:
        • four days before that if sending from within the United States
        • OR one week before that if sending from outside the United States
  • Additional $50 discount if all payments to Castellino training, Corp. are made in cash, check, or money order. See the Logistics sheet for that particular workshop for specific details.

Cancellation Policy

The $210 / $200 deposit is non-refundable. If you cancel, the cost to you depends on whether we can fill the workshop and when you cancel. Please give Sandra as much notice as possible. She may be able to find someone to fill the workshop and thus save you money as well as provide opportunities for others who wish to attend a workshop.

The date of cancellation is considered the date that Sandra (or the hostess/host for overseas workshops) processes and confirms your cancellation. This is best done via a direct phone call to 805-687-2897. You may send a cancellation via email if you like, but it may take up to several days to be processed, if Sandra is out of email contact temporarily. If Sandra notifies you she will be out of phone contact, then you will need to cancel by email.

For US workshops, if the workshop fills, $100 (check) + cc or paypal cost difference is a cancellation charge and $100 credit will be given toward a future process workshop with Ray. This is for you only and is not transferrable. At your request, anything you have paid beyond that will be refunded within 2 weeks of the first day of the workshop at the discounted (non-cc) rate, i.e. for those who paid by cc, we keep the difference between the amount you paid and the discounted amount. For example, if you paid $1350 by cc or paypal, you could receive a refund of $1100 ($1350-200 -50) plus a credit of $100 toward a future workshop with Ray.

If the workshop doesn't fill, the cost to you is as follows. If you have paid more, at your request it will be refunded within 2 weeks of the first day of the workshop, OR you can apply your refund to a future Process Workshop, OR contribute it to BEBA. If you have not paid what is due, it will be due within 2 weeks of the beginning of the workshop.

For workshops in 2017 and beyond

If you give Sandra... Then you will owe Castellino Training, Corp...
2 months' or more notice $200 if paid by check
6 weeks' or more notice $400 if paid by check
1 months' or more notice $500 if paid by check
3 weeks' or more notice $600 if paid by check
2 weeks' or more notice 60% of discounted price if paid by check
1 weeks' or more notice 80% of discounted price if paid by check
Less than 1 weeks' notice The full discounted price of the workshop if paid by check
For credit card or paypal payments, add 5% of payment received by cc or paypal up to $50

If you have a refund due, let us know whether you'd like it mailed to you, credited to a future workshop, or donated to BEBA, the non-profit clinic for working with babies, children and their parents that Ray co-founded and directs.

Checks Payable

Please make all checks or money orders payable to Castellino Training, Corp. Please write the dates of the workshop on the lower left corner of the check. That way, I'll know you have the dates correct. Please mail your check to Castellino Training, Corp., 1105 N Ontare Road, Santa Barbara, CA 93105

Returned Checks

We charge a $25 fee for all returned checks, even if they clear upon redepositing. Please make sure you have adequate funds in your account to cover your checks. Thank you.

Application & Registration

To apply & register for a 'Womb Surround' Process Workshop:

  1. Contact Sandra Castellino:

  2. Make sure that you meet our acceptance criteria. We do not accept applications from anyone who:

    • Smokes (including pipe, cigarette, e-cigarette whether inhaling or not) or uses nicotine in any form
    • Is addicted to anything other than caffeine, sugar
    • Is using narcotic pain relief or narcotics in any form
    • Is dependent on or uses alcohol or recreational drugs regularly. Applicants must be willing to abstain from both alcohol (including wine) and recreational drugs for 6 days, the whole day before the workshop and during the 5 days of the workshop until it ends, including breaks and evenings
    • Is taking mental health medications or canabis (we sometimes make individual exceptions for this)
  3. To reserve a place in a particular workshop or to be added to the waitlist for a particular workshop:

    1. Send your Birth History Form ideally in WORD with answers in bold, not PDF and a digital picture, a head shot or something with strong enough resolution to be cropped to a head shot.

    2. If accepted, pay at least a deposit, or in full, as priced above by the day after being accepted:

      • Via a check postmarked by the day after Sandra confirms acceptance. Please send an email confirmation that you have mailed the check OR
      • Via paypal to sandra(at)castellinotraining(dot)com. Use Commercial, not friends and family. We pay the fees. OR
      • Via credit card (Sandra can invoice you through Square at your request). This works for US credit cards only.

    Priority for taking Dr. Castellino's Process Workshops

    A process workshop is a prerequisite for applying to the Foundation Training. Since each workshop has only 6 participants, we will need to provide opportunities for those considering or taking the Foundaton Training to attend a process workshop and priority will given to professionals in the healing arts: those who make a living as health care providers: nurses, doctors, massage therapists, craniosacral therapists, PTs, OTs, SE practitioners, Rolfers, etc, or those who work with babies/children who meet one of the following criteria:

    • Trainees in one of Ray's Foundation Training who have not yet taken 3 process workshops with Ray
    • Body into Being trainees who have not yet taken 2 process workshop with Ray
    • Non-trainees who have not yet taken one process workshop with Ray

    So participants may be restricted to those on our 'priority list'. If you wish to take a process workshop and do not meet our 'priority list' criteria, please contact Sandra anyway to be put on a list of interested persons. Each full workshop has its own waitlist and each workshop with space in it has an 'interested' list for those wishing to be considered if it doesn't fill one month ahead. You may ask to be on the waitlist and/or interested list for as many workshops as you wish.

Process Workshop Application Form and your Picture

Please email a PICTURE of yourself, preferably a casual 'head shot' - this goes in our database so Sandra and Ray know / remember who you are when communicating. If you participate in a womb surround, it is part of the contact information that is shared with other participants and staff unless you specifically request it not to be shared.

Please send the birth history form so that you can be consideredfor the workshop. This includes being on the wait list. If the workshop is full and you wish to be on a any wait list, please fill in the form. We appreciate your taking the time to let us know about yourself. All material is kept confidential. Only Raymond, the co-facilitator and Sandra Castellino read the form. If there are assistants for the process workshop, Ray may verbally share relevent information with them so they can deepen their support for you.

Please email your application form to Sandra@CastellinoTraining.com. If you you have WORD, please email a MS Word document, not scanned images, and please bold your answers so we can tell them apart from the questions more easily when printed. We can usually also accept documents in Pages. If you don't have WORD, please send the application form in 'rtf'.

Ray may need to review this to confirm your place. If you want a copy of the form for yourself, save it please.

  • Long Form:
    • MS Word (to download, fill in, and return by email as an attached Word document)
    • PDF (to print, fill in by hand, and fax or mail). Please avoid using this option, if possible.
  • Short Form:
    • MS Word (to download, fill in, and return by email as an attached Word document)
    • PDF (to print, fill in by hand, and fax or mail) Please avoid using this option, if possible.

Please download and fill out only ONE of the birth history forms above: the long version if you have not taken a workshop with Ray before or filled in a birth history for private sessions; or the short version if you have.

For logistical information sheets, please see the table above.

After the workshop, we would appreciate if you would fill out both:

  • a feedback form (PDF or MS Word), letting us know how the workshop experience was for you; and
  • a release form (PDF or MS Word), letting us know whether we may use parts of your video or story or others video for teaching purposes.


For each workshop, information about accommodations is included under 'logistics' next to the dates of the workshop. You will also find there the contact information for the host(ess), directions, etc.

Certified Workshop Facilitators

Process Workshops whose faciliators are certified by Ray may be taken as alternatives to Ray's as prerequisite or required process workshops for trainees and potential trainees and are open to anyone for personal and/or professional growth. For information, please contact the relevant facilitator directly. They travel to offer process workshops, including other parts of the USA. They all also offer other other courses/workshops and work with families and individuals.

In order to be certified, each has demonstrated competence, graduated from a Foundation Training, assisted a complete Foundation Training (or is assisting the current Foundation Training), is an RCST (registered craniosacral therapist) or the equivalent or is working toward that and has completed 1/2 the course, has taken at least 6 Process Workshops, has assisted at least 4 process workshops, has taken at least 2 Practitioner Training workshops including at least one as a practioner or has co-facilitated 2 womb surrounds with Ray, and has successfully offered at least 5 process workshops on their own or 10 co-led with phone supervision afterwards with Ray.

Name and Email or Website Location Phone
Alison Greene-Barton, RCST®
Amherst, MA
(United States)
+1 805 276-8207
Chantek McNeilage, RCST
Essex, England
(United Kingdom)
+44 1799 527084
Charisse Basquin, DC
Fife, Scotland
(United Kingdom)
+44 1333 450 302
Claudia Koehler, PT
+49 351-2679271
Cynthia Cutting, CNP, SEP, BCST, CNMret
Williamsville, VT (United States) 917 902-6114
David Haas, B.Sc.(Hons), RPP, RCST
Surrey, England
(United Kingdom)
+44 1483 423352
Eileen Sendrey, CMT
Morgan Hill, CA (United States) 408 892-2820
Frank Carbone
Ojai, CA (United States) +1 805 320-7985
Judith Lee Cohen, RN, MTh, RCST®
Savannah, GA (United States) +1 520 241-8335
Judyth Weaver, PhD, RCST®, SEP, SAL, RMP
Seattle, Washington (United States)
Cortes Island, British Columbia (Canada)
+1 206 361-4124
+1 250 935-8500
Kevin Davis®, LCSW, LMFT, LCAS, SEP
Charlotte, NC
(United States)
704 807-8939
Klaus Kaeppeli, dipl.psych.FSP
Eggersriet, CH-9034
+41 7122 34891
Kristin Sipley, RCST®
Santa Cruz, California
(United States)
+1 831 295-8384
Lin Vermeiren
Mary Jackson, RN, LM, RCST®
Ventura, California
(United States)
+1 805 649-3063
Myrna Martin, MN, RCC, RCST®
Nelson, British Columbia
+1 250 509-1033
Rebecca MacSween, RCST;
Regina Buecher, RPP, RCST, dipl.Heilpaed
+49 7668 950764
Sabera Dringenberg, Heilpraktikerin, BCST
+49 176 4200 5788
Sarah Theismann, MA, CMP, SEP, CSB
Petaluma, CA & other locations
(United States)
+1 510-610-0320
Scott Engler, MA, RCST, BCST
Petaluma, California
(United States)
+1 707 953-1441
Susan Lange, OMD, LAc
Santa Monica, California
(United States)
+1 310 395-9525 x2#
Tara Blasco, PhD, RCST®
Ojai, California
(United States)
+1 805 646-1269