This presentation proposes a conceptualization of the problems affecting refugees that takes into account the complex interaction of trauma and subsequent stressors and protective factors. It also explains a framework for intervention based on a systemic understanding of trauma and its effects that incorporates biological, psychological, and psychosocial interventions. It also explores the challenges involved in addressing the impact of trauma on refugees at individual, family’ group and community levels through the integrated utilization of a variety of interventions.
The presentation draws heavily on the cumulative experience of STARTTS, an organization that has been in existence since 1988, and has assisted well over 12000 refugees traumatized in the context of war, repression and other forms of organized violence.
Evidence suggests that even basic information about trauma related symptoms and issues can help traumatised people to understand their traumatic experiences and to make sense of their symptoms. How the clients react to the intrusions depends on how they view the nature of these symptoms. This lecture defines psychoeducation and explains the use of techniques in clarifying and reframing that can assist clients to correct their misconceptions about trauma symptoms and disorders. It is important for clients to understand that people who suffer PTSD often re-experience the traumatic events through intrusive thoughts and ideation, through dreams as traumatic nightmares, and sometimes even through flashbacks.
This paper focuses on the consequences of torture and war in different populations and deals with the new strategies implemented by the NSW Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors (www.STARTTS.org.au) to overcome trauma related psychological symptoms of Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD). This presentation aims to emphasis Neurofeedback as one of the approaches of STARTTS’ Bio-Psycho-Social Model in order to strengthen clients’ capacities making them more sustainable to deal with complex PTSD, by regulating the clients’ nervous system.
The trauma, shock and suffering experienced through the recent acts of terrorism, such as September 11th and the subsequent ‘War on Terror’, has had an enomorous psychosocial impact on Muslims resettling in Australia. Many have experienced re-traumatisation accompanied by severe posttraumatic symptoms, grief and loss reactions, anger, resentment, survivor guilt, anxiety and depression. However, the situation has become further complicated through the association of terrorism with Islam and being Muslim It has become common to hear reports of stigmatization, fear, rejection, harassment and discrimination experienced by Muslims.
The aim of the presentation is to highlight importance as well as complexity of the psychological assessment of torture and trauma survivors treated at the NSW Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors (STARTTS). STRATTS’ clients have experienced multiple traumas; being severely maltreated and persecuted. They face difficulties on the individual, family, community and society levels, suffering from chronic general health conditions and dealing with severe psychological symptoms.
This paper is based on 18 years of field experience in Asia, Africa, and Australia, researching the rape and sexual abuse of refugee and IDP women and girls in conflict situations, camps and urban refugee settings. These actions are often based on notions of depriving women of “honour” and thus shaming individuals, families and communities. In some cases it is used as a form of ethnic cleansing.
This lecture presents a case study using a psychodynamic model for therapeutic work with a refugee child from Iraq. The model draws on parent and teacher interviews, transference and counter-transference phenomena, and play behaviour to formulate a hypothesis about the causes of the child’s anxieties. Importantly, the value of play and playfulness is emphasised throughout therapy.
Schools are in an excellent position to support children, young people and families of refugee background in their resettlement and recovery from trauma.VFST prioritises supporting schools through the