Sunday, December 21st, 2014

National Symposium: Connecting Leaders, Impacting Communities & Sustaining Programs: Strengthening the National Torture Treatment Network

SAVE THE DATE!

April 27-28, 2015

University of Miami
Miami, FL

Join us April 27-28, 2015!

Interactive Modules I Actionable Workshops I Strategic Networking

As programs are created, expanded and optimized with ever-shrinking resources, it is critical that refugee service and torture treatment providers address not only holistic practices in refugee mental health, but also the components of building and expanding sustainable programs and networks both regionally and nationally.

The National Partnership for Community Training, a partnership between the Florida Center for Survivors of Torture, the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma and NYU/Bellevue Program for Survivors of Torture, is joining the University of Miami School of Law’s Human Rights Clinic to invite you to a 2-day National Symposium during which leading experts in the field will introduce and demonstrate tools and techniques for creating robust torture treatment and refugee mental health programs.

The Symposium will address considering non- traditional program structures, implementing meaningful partnerships, and integrating clinical and legal approaches, while experts will also address current thematic issues in torture treatment, such as working with interpreters and designing orientation curricula.

As providers, we have a responsibility to be aware of what is working for our colleagues and clients in the field. Not only is it imperative for direct services, it also informs advocacy efforts, grant proposals and community, regional, and national responses to the refugee, asylum seeker, and asylee experience.

CEUs will be provided!

Application for continuing education is pending. Provider 50-190, Expiration 2015

CALL FOR ABSTRACTS

We now invite contributions from scholars and clinicians from across the disciplines, to present any best or promising approaches to implementing refugee mental health programs and working with survivors of torture.
All topics related to holistic approaches with survivors of torture and trauma will be considered, but preferred topics include:

  • Measurement & evaluation for impact (M&E strategies for programs/ how to increase and measure programmatic impact)
  • Advocacy through a public health lens (educating clients/ educating public with facts/ reclaiming the concept of advocacy)
  • LGBTQ issues in resettled refugee communities
  • Working with interpreters
  • Political strategy (Political advocacy for torture survivors)

Submission Process:

  •  A title and 250-word abstract to: Melodie Kinet: mkinet@gcjfcs.org
  • A short biography
  • Proposals for 75 minute sessions, workshops, roundtables, etc. also encouraged
  • Abstracts should include 3 learning objectives and at least on interactive exercise
  • Deadline: January 9, 2015
  • Decision notification: January 16, 2015. The conference registration fee will be waived for presenters

We are interested in what approaches are working and invite those working in the field to submit an abstract. Regional and state refugee health coordinators, program directors, entrepreneurs in the torture field, social workers, health professionals, lawyers, educators, ESL teachers, therapists, faith leaders, refugee groups and other trauma-related professions will be encouraged to attend.

Registration information will be provided soon!

 

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Trauma, Spirituality and Faith: An Overview of the Interplay as Survivors Risk Connection and Recovery

Spirituality and faith can be leveraged to increase mental health for survivors of torture, displacement, immigration and other traumatic experiences by assisting in the process of rebuilding one’s sense of self through strengthening self-capacities, such as managing feelings, positive inner connections, and felling worthy of life. This webinar provides a broad overview of the role of spirituality and faith in recovery from trauma, and in fostering mental health.
The objectives of this webinar are to:
  1. Effectively convey the importance of faith communities in health and recovery for refugees, immigrants, torture survivors, and others who have experienced trauma
  2. Connect spiritual practices such as yoga, meditation, and ritual to healing and community-building
  3. Equip providers with knowledge and tools useful in leveraging faith communities in the service of reaching out to torture survivors
  4. Embed best and promising practices for working with survivors of torture in the context of connecting with faith communities

This webinar is presented by Elizabeth Power, M. Ed., an internationally known and respected facilitator in the world of creating communities that are trauma-informed and trauma-responsive. She speaks from the voice of lived experience with trauma. Her firm, EPower & Associates, is an authorized provider of Sidran Institute’s Risking Connection® curriculum, which she presented to over 300 organizations and faith communities in the last ten years. Additionally, she has provided services for a five year SAMHSA grant promoting the transformation to trauma-informed care in King County Washington’s mental health service delivery system, developed the Trauma-Responsive Systems Implementation Advisor (TReSIA) model, delivered training to traditional people in Hawaii and Navajoland, and provided support for the development of programs working with indigenous people.

Click the slide below to view the webinar

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Download a PDF of the slides here

View the webinar: Trauma, Spirituality, and Faith: An Overview of the Interplay as Survivors Risk Connection and Recovery

Information Guide: Understanding and Treating the Deleterious Effects of Refugee Trauma on Health

The National Partnership for Community Training is pleased to present the Information Guide:  Understanding and Treating the Deleterious Effects of Refugee Trauma on Health.

While relevant for all providers, this information guide is targeted particularly towards physicians and clinical practitioners. The guide outlines general principles for medical professionals working with survivors of torture, explaining common medical problems survivors may present, as well as how trauma somaticizes into illness. The guide provides tips for eliciting the trauma story from clients.

This information guide is based on research and modules presented at NPCT trainings developed by Dr. Allen Keller, MD, the Director of the NYU/Bellevue Program for Survivors of Torture and Dr. Richard Mollica MD, Director of the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma.

Download the information guide here

Watch Dr. Allen Keller’s webinar: Primary Care for Survivors of Torture and Refugee Trauma

Watch Dr. Richard Mollica’s webinar: Health Promotion for Torture and Trauma Survivors

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Sudan

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Addressing Mental Health, PTSD, and Suicide in Refugee Communities webinar

Refugees face a broad range of challenges that can make them more susceptible to mental health difficulties, including PTSD, depression, and suicide. Awareness of Western medical-based diagnoses is fundamental, but providers must also be aware of the ways that distress is manifested or verbalized by their clients, and feel empowered to provide culturally appropriate treatment or referrals.

The objectives of this webinar are to:

  1. Enhance the capabilities of providers in recognizing and meeting refugee mental health needs,
  2. Assist social service providers in responding to recent increases in suicide attempts in the refugee community
  3. Present indicators, warning signs and prevalence of PTSD, depression, somaticization and suicidal ideation
  4. Present evidence-based interventions for addressing PTSD, depression, somatiicization and suicide

This webinar is presented by Kristin L. Towhill, LCSW, a psychotherapist who serves as the Clinical Supervisor at the Florida Center for Survivors of Torture. She has worked extensively with clients with trauma and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder from torture, combat, and sexual abuse and assault. She has presented to a range of professionals, laypeople, and students on PTSD, complex trauma, dissociative disorders, and diversity.

Click the slide below to view the webinar

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Download a PDF of the slides here

Download the Information Guide: Suicide Precaution: How to Identify When Levels of Sadness or Depression are a Concern

Download the Information Guide: Substance Abuse and the Torture Survivor Experience

Download the Information Guide: Working with Refugees with PTSD

View the webinar: Working with Refugees with PTSD

Building Awareness, Skills & Knowledge: A Community Response to the Torture Survivor Experience

The National Partnership for Community Training, in collaboration with Lutheran Social Services South Dakota, will be hosting a training on September 10 -11, 2014 in Sioux Falls, SD for providers who serve the immigrant, refugee, asylee, and asylum-seeking populations.

Many professionals, such as social workers, teachers, doctors, nurses and mental health clinicians, may not have been trained in, and are generally unaware of, the specific issues, treatments and referral needs that survivors of torture can pose. 

This training includes presentations from a nationally-recognized expert in the torture treatment field from the Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture and in the substance abuse treatment field from Florida International University.

There is no charge for the training, but registration is required.

Registration deadline has been extended to Friday, August 29, 2014 or when we reach capacity.

 CLICK HERE for more information.

 

Information Guide: Working with Refugees with PTSD

The National Partnership for Community Training is pleased to present the information guide: Working with Refugees with PTSD

PTSD is an anxiety disorder that can manifest as a result of experiencing, witnessing, or perpetrating torture or trauma and is one of the most common mental health issues experienced by refugees.

This information guide is based on a webinar presented by Kristin L. Towhill, LCSW, a Florida Center for Survivors of Torture clinical supervisor.

Download the information guide here

View the webinar here

Download a PDF of the presentation slides here

Working with Refugees with PTSD

PTSD is an anxiety disorder that can manifest as a result of experiencing, witnessing, or perpetrating torture or trauma. According to the CDC, PTSD along with Major Depression are the most common health issues experienced by refugees (2012).

The objectives of the webinar are to:

1. Enhance provider-client relationships and create more successful outcomes with refugees with PTSD
2. Provide an in-depth understanding of PTSD symptomatology and its impact on the survivor
3. Empower providers in making their own clinical decisions in the moment

The presenter is:

Kristen Towhill, LCSW, is a Clinical Supervisor at the Florida Center for Survivors of Torture. Ms. Towhill has worked extensively with clients with trauma and PTSD from torture, combat, and sexual abuse and assault. She has presented to a wide range of professionals and students on PTSD, complex trauma, dissociative disorders, and diversity.

This webinar was developed in conjunction with the Ethiopian Community Development Council.

Download the accompanying Information Guide: Working with Refugees with PTSD

Click the slide below to view the webinar

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Download a PDF of the slides here

Making Specialized Referrals

NPCT is pleased to present the latest Information Guide, Making Specialized Referrals. This information guide assists in making effective and informed referrals by highlighting the process and the content needed to develop and maintain a referral network. Screenings and referrals are necessary in order to ensure the effective use of holistic treatment for torture survivors. Screenings are not meant to be diagnostic tools, but rather instruments to help identify medical or mental health cases that might need to be referred to professionals outside of your agency. This guide highlights some of the more popular screening instruments currently being used in the refugee trauma field.

Download the Information Guide here.

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Substance Abuse and the Torture Survivor Experience – Information Guide

Survivors of torture are not more likely to abuse drugs or alcohol; however, alcohol and substance abuse often develop secondarily in torture survivors as a way of obliterating traumatic memories, regulating affect, and managing anxiety.

This information guide assists social service providers in better understanding the nature, course, prevention, and treatment of substance use problems; the link between substance abuse and trauma; the models used to explain problematic use; and clinical considerations for working with substance abusing clients. 

This information guide is based on the February 26, 2014 NPCT webinar, Substance Abuse and the Torture Survivor Experience.

Download the information guide: Substance Abuse and the Torture Survivor Experience

View the webinar

Download a PDF of the PowerPoint slides here

Strengthening the Congolese Community: Background, Resettlement, and Treatment – Information Guide

Congolese refugees have fled repeatedly over the last 15 years as various rebel groups have added to the unrest. As of January 2013, UNHCR reported over 509,000 Congolese refugees and 56,000 asylum seekers residing outside the country and approximately 2.6 million internally displaced people. Congolese refugees are not new to the US. About 13,000 Congolese have been resettled since 2001 with 65% of arrivals coming in the last four years.

This Information Guide offers some background and practical considerations for preparing for Congolese arrivals. In addition, this information guide offers a one page guide to a trauma informed and culturally syntonic approach to service provision, which assists in de-stigmatizing the Congolese and strengthens your role in helping them to become better contributing and functioning members of the community.

This Information Guide was based on the webinar, Strengthening the Congolese Community: Background, Resettlement, and Treatment, which was originally hosted by NPCT on December 11, 2013.

Download the Information Guide – Strengthening the Congolese Community: Background, Resettlement, and Treatment.

View the webinar.

Download a PDF of the PowerPoint slides here.

The International Rescue Committee has also released a Backgrounder on Congolese Women and Girls. Experiences of Refugee Women and Girls from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC): Learning from IRC’s Women’s Protection and Empowerment Programs in DRC, Tanzania, Burundi, and Uganda.

 

Substance Abuse and the Torture Survivor Experience

The varying degrees of trauma experienced by refugees and torture survivors can have physical, emotional, cognitive, and behavioral effects. In order to cope, forget, or ignore the impact of violent conflict, flight, resettlement, and adjustment some refugees and torture survivors may turn to substance use.

The objectives of this webinar are to:

  1. introduce the theories and model pertaining to substance abuse
  2. offer guidance in identifying, diagnosing, referring, and treating substance abuse within the refugee and torture survivor community
  3. address the apprehension of some social service providers in addressing substance abuse
  4. address the stigma and cultural norms associated with substance abuse
  5. offer best practices for dealing with substance abuse

The presenters are:

Eric F. Wagner, Ph.D., Director of Florida International University’s Community Based Intervention Research Group

Richard Mollica, M.D., M.A.R., Director of the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma of Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School

Click the slide below to view the webinar.

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Download a PDF of the slides here.

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