FNDcourage - Regulating Your Nervous System One Step at a Time.

The Team

Staff

Dr. Moenter, founder of FNDcourage and the Boulder Center for Neuro Health, is a founding member of the FND Society.  She has been supporting individuals diagnosed with Functional Neurological Disorder for over 15 years.  Dr. Moenter received her Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Sciences with a concentration in Psychology and a specialization in Neuropsychology, as well as an M.A. in Therapeutic Psychology.

Dr. Moenter’s special interest in FND started in 2002 while conducting research for her doctoral dissertation on complex partial epilepsy and PTSD.  Over the years her curiosity and commitment to helping individuals with FND lead to a polyvagal theory informed treatment protocol that has helped many to self-regulate the FND nervous system.

The use of this body-based approach has become more refined and sophisticated during Dr. Moenter’s daily dedication to helping those with FND, her practice of relational mindfulness, her 30 years of extensive training and experience in working with symptoms of chronic stress and trauma, and her everlasting curiosity about how to end unnecessary suffering.  

Dr. Afra Moenter
(she/her)
Founder/CEO

Amanda received her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and a Master’s in Library and Information Science.  She has worked for almost two decades in public and privately funded nonprofit organizations, spending the majority of her time in nonprofit management and administration, including serving as the Content Manager of an online professional development academy, Assistant Director of a public library and Founder/Director of a nonprofit, Stormcells.

Amanda has a heart for service and creative problem-solving which she has used to guide youth and adult programming, fundraising efforts, grant management, marketing plans, and strategic planning.  She has focused much of her career on serving children, families, and community organizations.

Amanda’s passion for FND began when her daughter was diagnosed in early 2020.  As a result, Amanda and her husband, James, have become increasingly involved in the advocacy and support of FND research, awareness, and patient support.  Amanda also serves as the Executive Director of FND Hope US.

 

Amanda Hopper
(she/her)
Administrative Consultant

Volunteers

I am a Colorado educator by heart and a recovering perfectionist by trade.  I have an exquisite husband, a four-year-old son, an 18-month-old daughter, and a 12-year-old dachshund mutt who helps me to live in the present moment.

If you choose to join this community, you won’t regret it.  I look forward to seeing you.  When I developed FND, I was largely unaware of the ways in which I was ignoring and abusing my nervous system.  Through my work with Dr. Moenter and FNDcourage, I have learned to respect my nervous system and we are becoming friends.  My newly befriended nervous system is helping me to find my place in the world and thrive in a way I never imagined.

If you choose to join this community, you won’t regret it.  I look forward to seeing you.

Rose
(she/her)
Study Group Facilitator
Facilitating: Winter 2023
2024 Teen Retreat

Hello!  I am Zane – one of the study group leaders for Dr. Moenter’s FNDcourage course this year–welcome!  

I am a true westerner by heart.  I grew up in the deserts around Phoenix, AZ where I spent my childhood backpacking through the various landscapes – canyons, deserts, rivers and mountains.  I took that experience and ran with it; traveling to Europe and Africa in the summer of ’89. After college, I pursued a graduate degree in Fine Art in Detroit, MI which continues to keep me very busy on my feet and hands.  I love to build, create and fabricate just about anything.

I returned to the west by moving to the beautiful state of Colorado where I icked up that childhood love for the landscape.  If I’m not busy with work, you’ll find me in the backcountry of the Colorado Rockies either mountain biking or snowboarding.  I look forward to working with you.

 

Zane
(he/him)
Study Group Facilitator
Not Currently Facilitating
2024 Teen Retreat

My name is Bre and I love working with people with FND!  I have a Bachelor’s in Psychology, a slight obsession with Brene Brown and a passion for learning about the nervous system.  I’m a native Californian and feel lucky to be raising my three spirited daughters here, alongside my supportive husband.  

Since developing FND, I’ve learned that my old ways of rushing around and being harsh towards myself were getting me nowhere.  Working with Dr. Moenter has taught me how to tune into my nervous system and give myself what I need.  I’m a recovering perfectionist who is finally realizing that it’s okay to be human.

I love this community and am grateful for the hope, acceptance and support I’ve gained.  Learning about FND through Dr. Moenter’s lens has given me hope for a beautiful future, and I hope that it does the same for you!

 

Bre
(she/her)
Study Group Facilitator
Not Currently Facilitating

My name is Katie and I live in a cottage in the Swedish countryside with my dogs and cat.  I love rescuing animals and once I adopted my first dog I found a true calling in life –  to understand their behavior, rescue, and rehabilitate them.  I have worked as a dog behaviorist and help organizations that find strays new homes.

I have become equally nerdy studying health, as I have been struggling since my mid-twenties.  Once I found this work on regulating the nervous system, everything started to make sense!  I had been helping dogs regulate their nervous systems for years but never understood how off my own system was.

Doing this work and finding support and wonderful friends through this community, I am finding a whole new lease on life.  I look forward to being on this journey with you.  It’s a fascinating one!

Katie
(she/her)
Study Group Facilitator
Not Currently Facilitating

My name is Chisum.  I am a current Nursing student in Nebraska. I’ve always loved the outdoors; whether it was riding four-wheelers, swimming, exploring the mountains with my Dave Canterbury book in hand, or riding my horses, you could always find me outside. Along with the outdoors, I love music (playing it/listening to it), reading, and writing. I’m a firm believer in music and horses’ healing, maybe not in the physical sense but definitely in the mental and emotional sense.

I was diagnosed with FND when I was in 8th grade and have been living with it ever since. I grew up in a small town where FND was never heard of, mental health was hardly recognized, and good doctors were few and far between. I spent so much of my life rushing around and not finding the importance of myself and my mental health, that my body took matters into its own hands. If it wasn’t for Dr. Moenter and a lot of (continuing) self-work, I can say with confidence I would not be the woman I am today – for that, I will always be grateful. I’m proud to be in an organization where I can give back!

Chisum
(she/her)
Teen Retreat Volunteer

My name is Jim (aka. Farmer Jim) and I am in my mid-60s. I have always loved the outdoors– gardening, wildlife, and photography. We used to camp and take pictures of wildlife and nature and take nature walks. I love planting new things in my garden every year and growing new things. I have a wonderful wife, one daughter, and three granddaughters that I love very much. I also have two Beagles, Flynn, and Buford, that I love dearly.

Before I got the FND diagnosis, I was diagnosed with a stroke and MS. In 2019 they officially gave me the FND diagnosis. Things were looking bleak for me until I met Dr. Moenter and started the FNDcourage course. I was working 40-60 hours a week and holding down three work positions. I was placed on disability and I am now on SSDI. Dr. Moenter taught me how to slow down and enjoy life. I have met wonderful FND friends and made priceless friendships. I am committed to helping find ways to make it easier for us to live with FND. I am always trying new things and providers to help with the daily struggles we have with FND. If it was not for my drive to get better, I would not be in the place that I am right now.

Jim
(he/him)
Teen Retreat Volunteer

Hi, I’m Avery.  I’m a social work student at the University of Texas at Austin.  I love reading, discovering new coffee spots, having potluck dinners and wine nights with friends, and volunteering to support my community.  I spend lots of my time watching movies with my cat, Peach, watching the Congress bridge bats, and attempting to keep my houseplant alive.

I was diagnosed with FND at 14.  Seizures and paralysis struck, leaving me unable to move or function comfortably and independently.  Things felt incredibly hopeless and like many others, my FND journey was almost like the necessary death of an unsupportive lifestyle and an invitation to grow something softer and beautiful for myself.  With the guidance of Dr. Moenter, I regained stability and developed a newfound appreciation for my nervous system.  I’ve achieved dreams I once thought were out of reach – independence, pursuing higher education, physical strength, mental stability, positive health and relationships, and perhaps most importantly, losing the “cap” I thought my FND had set for my future.  I’m thrilled to connect with others as a volunteer at the teen retreat – it’s a true honor.

Avery
(she/her)
Teen Retreat Volunteer

I am an improver at heart and always looking for ways to bring people together to make things better.  I’ve spent the last 25 years working in healthcare improvement, bringing teams of healthcare professionals, patients and families together to improve care for and with people living with complex, chronic conditions such as HIV/AIDS, Epilepsy, Inflammatory Bowel Disease and Cystic Fibrosis.

When my daughter was diagnosed with FND in 2020, our lives were turned upside down.  Despite many years working in healthcare, firsthand experience taught me the relentless advocacy needed to navigate broken systems.  Through a stroke of luck, we found Dr. Moenter and temporarily relocated from Seattle to Boulder, CO.  It was the best decision we ever made.  

I am forever grateful to have found Dr. Moenter and the FNDcourage community.  Quality FND treatment shouldn’t be left to the chance of living in Colorado or the privilege of being able to travel for care.  I want to be part of helping Dr. Moenter spread her approach so we can improve FND care for all!

Karen
(she/her)
Administrative - Process Improvement

James is a Director of Program Management for a large international bank.  He holds both PM and Scrum certifications and enjoys launching new products and services, as well as developing organizational strategies.  James has spent that the last ten years helping nonprofit organizations and currently resides on the International Board of FND Hope International.

His personal connection to FND fuels his dedication to the mission of FNDcourage.  His youngest child, El, was diagnosed with functional seizures in 2020 and FND in 2021.  Witnessing firsthand the lack of services and support for FND, James committed himself to serving the community and advancing the cause of FNDcourage.  James is a passionate advocate for FND.

James
(he/him)
Administrative - Program Management