Saturday, January 20th, 2018

New AmeriCorps Position – Apply Today!

Gulf Coast Jewish Family & Community Services is seeking a new Refugee AmeriCorps Member for the third year of the program.

No automatic alt text available.

Position Description

The Refugee AmeriCorps member will aid in enhancing the volunteer capacity of Gulf Coast Jewish Family & Community Services Refugee Resettlement and Preferred Communities programs. The Refugee AmeriCorps Member will also assist in providing direct services to refugees and supplement Preferred Communities Case Management activities by helping to develop a:

(1) Mentoring Program;

(2) Community Facilitated Enhanced Cultural Orientation;

(3) Refugee Speakers Bureau; and

(4) Volunteer Engagement Strategies.

This position reports to Program Coordinator and/or Director.


• Must be a US citizen or legal permanent resident and authorized to work in the U.S.
• Must be at least 18 years old
• Must have a high school diploma or be willing to earn one while serving (undergraduate degree strongly preferred)
• Previous experience working with refugees and immigrants preferred
• Bilingual (Spanish or Arabic) a plus to meet the current language needs of clients
• Valid FL Driver’s License & Current Automobile Insurance
• Must commit to one full year of service (1,700 hrs. of service)
• Living wage stipend provided


Send resumes and letter of interest to:

Upon completion of service, Refugee AmeriCorps Member will be eligible for an education award of $5,730.
For more information on the Refugee AmeriCorps program click here or contact Sara Bedford (301) 844-7239

E-Learning Course

Registration is now closed – materials will be made available shortly after the course is finished.


NPCT’s free e-learning course is designed to bring like-minded individuals together to delve into relevant topics and create sustainable action items to address those topics.  Based on national feedback from service providers and resettlement staff, NPCT has tailored this year’s content to two student groups (cohorts): refugee community leaders and licensed mental health professionals. The course will include accessing subject matter experts directly; networking with national colleagues about best practices; acquiring new skills, resources, and tools for better client outcomes; and participating in a 3-month mentorship program after the E-Learning course.



Cohort 1: Refugee Community Leaders, “Harnessing Leadership and Resilience”

  1. Develop and build upon refugee leaders’ leadership skills to enhance resiliency.
  2. Discover how leadership skills can transform negative experiences.
  3. Explore the process of moving from maladaptive responses to past trauma (as seen in the DSM-V) to pro-social change.

Cohort 2: Mental Health Clinicians, “Enhancing Mental Health through Mindfulness”

  1. Explore how to implement mindfulness-based practices for self-care, client stabilization, and the therapeutic alliance with refugee clients.
  2. Describe the importance and effectiveness of including somatic and movement-based practices when working clinically with refugee and survivor of torture clients.
  3. Discuss the intersection of mindfulness and somatic approaches with the fundamental practice of breath.
  4. Learn how to incorporate skills learned throughout the course into commonly used or mainstream therapeutic modalities.


Cohort 1 Presenter: Isabelle Darling, MSW

Isabelle Darling, MSW has over 15 years’ experience working with communities impacted by violence and trauma, specifically within refugee and survivors of torture populations. Through her experiences providing mental health and social support to those exposed to trauma, she has learned the experts in the room are always those receiving services. Isabelle Darling provides pathways to empowerment to those that have been categorized as marginalized. Through providing leadership trainings, Isabelle Darling aims to transform the labels “at-risk,” “disenfranchised,” “fragile,” “victimized” into “community leaders,” “educators,” “advocates,” “change-makers,” and “ambassadors.” She uses leadership trainings to find lessons in the trauma to guide communities to end cycles of violence and build positive community change.

Isabelle Darling’s leadership training programs include the development of a community health outreach program at the International Institute of New England in Lowell, MA. This program trained refugee community leaders on health issues impacting the refugee community, provided solution-focused resources to community health needs, and taught essential leadership skills to refugees. From presentation skills, event planning, advocacy, and community mapping, refugee leaders were equipped with the tools necessary to spread accurate and useful health information to refugee communities. Isabelle Darling has also facilitated refugee women’s mental health groups where mothers discovered how to harness the power of motherhood into everyday leadership opportunities. Isabelle Darling is currently developing an online community that will support refugees to become community leaders through mentorship, daily practices of mindfulness, physical health, and leadership skill development to enhance positive community change locally and globally.

Currently working as the clinical lead mental health consultant at the National Partnership for Community Training and a Contract Program Monitor at ACF’s Office of Refugee Resettlement, Isabelle Darling is honored to be working with phenomenal leaders within and on behalf of the refugee community. Inspired by scholar, artist, and activist Su’ad Abdul Khabeer, she aims not to “be a voice for the voiceless” but to simply “pass the mic.”


Cohort 2 Presenter: Amber Gray, MPH, MA, BC-DMT, LPCC, NCC

Amber Gray is an award-winning Dance Movement Therapist who has worked in refugee mental health and torture treatment since 1998. She has served as a senior clinician, a clinical director, a director and the founding program coordinator for torture treatment and refugee mental health programs in Colorado, Haiti and New Mexico. She was a Clinical Advisor to The Center for Victims of Torture for two years, and has consulted and provided clinical training on refugee mental health, torture treatment and creative arts, mindfulness, and body-based therapies with survivors and refugees to more than 30 programs worldwide since the 1990’s.She also assists governmental and non-governmental organizations to create staff support programs to support first responders and humanitarian response workers in post-disaster and complex humanitarian emergency contexts, that integrate “alternative” and innovative approaches.

As a pioneer for the use of Somatic Psychology, Dance Movement Therapy and Continuum Movement with survivors of torture and refugees, Amber’s expertise in “alternative” and creative arts therapies is represented in many published articles and chapters, keynote addresses, professional collaborations and presentations around the world. She originated a resiliency-based framework and practice (Restorative Movement Psychotherapy) for mind-heart-spirit, somatic, movement and arts-based therapies with survivors of trauma in cross cultural, low resource contexts, and is co-developing Polyvagal-informed Dance Movement Therapy with Dr. Porges, based on the wisdom of whole body intelligence. She currently is Director of Restorative Resources Training and Consulting and Executive Director of The Kint Institute’s Certificate Program for the Arts in Trauma Treatment.


Time Commitment and Participation Requirement

The course will last two (2) weeks and will take about 7 hours per week. Internet access is required in order to participate in course work.

Each segment of the course will consist of an in-depth look at each topic. Each week participants will engage in activities including live classroom presentations and facilitated discussions with the subject matter expert, interactive activities, and discussions with experts and colleagues. Participants are expected to commit fully to this course. Each participant is required to attend each live classroom session, complete assigned tasks, and engage in a 3 month course mentorship program.


Eligibility Requirements

Cohort 1 Eligibility Requirements

To be considered for entry into Cohort 1: Refugee Community Leaders, applicants must 1) currently hold or have previously held refugee status and 2) currently serve in a leadership capacity.  Qualifying leadership positions may be on the individual level (e.g., refugee mother attending college), the community level (e.g., refugee community association member, group facilitator or interpreter) or the state or national level (e.g., health coordinator, administrator, policy maker).


Cohort 2 Eligibility Requirements

This course’s content will be tailored for mental health professionals providing therapeutic services to refugee clientele who want to incorporate embodied or mindfulness techniques. Applicants must be providing therapy or counseling for refugee clients *or* planning to do so in the near future. All backgrounds and concentrations (psychiatry, social work, traditional healing, etc.) are welcome to register, as the techniques taught in this course can apply to all mental health disciplines.


Limited Space

Enrollment will be limited to fifteen (15) participants per cohort.




Certificates of completion will be provided for participants that complete the course and meet all mandatory requirements of the course within the required time frame.



3-Month Mentorship Program

This E-Learning course will provide support for participants even past the 2-week live instruction. NPCT will offer one hour-long consultation each month for 3 months after the E-Learning course ends. This mentorship component is meant to assist students in their implementation process of the course’s curriculum. Students will have access to the course’s subject matter experts during these monthly calls to ask questions and describe current strategies.


LearnWorlds Tutorial

Wheel of Life

Integrating Refugee Mental Healthcare: RHS-15 and healthcare providers

The National Partnership for Community Training is pleased to present

Integrating Refugee Mental Healthcare: RHS-15 and healthcare providers Webinar



  • Illustrate benefits for refugees to have early mental health screenings and ongoing access to services within integrative healthcare models.
  • Share how the scoring of the RHS-15 can help providers identify patient history, including torture.
  • Describe process of creating strong collaborations among physical health and mental health professionals.

See a link to the recording here.

See the powerpoint here.


Subject Matter Experts

Mara Rabin, MD

Dr. Rabin graduated from Georgetown University School of Medicine and trained in Family Medicine at the University of Colorado. She conducted Utah’s refugee health screenings for 14 years, cared for over 5000 refugees, and continues to care for many refugees in her current practice. Since 2003, Dr. Rabin has been the Medical Director of Utah Health & Human Rights, a non-profit dedicated to the holistic healing of refugee and immigrant survivors of severe human rights abuses. Dr. Rabin was an invited expert consultant to the Centers for Disease Control’s Refugee Health Screening guidelines and has conducted research on torture prevalence and associated health conditions among Utah’s refugees. She is the co-author of “Torture and Refugees,” a chapter in Refugee Health Care: An Essential Medical Guide. She has spoken locally, nationally, and internationally about the unique health needs of torture survivors. Through the Center for Mind Body Medicine, based in Washington, D.C., Dr. Rabin completed certification in facilitating Mind-Body Skills groups. She has also been recognized by the Utah Refugee Services Office for her “invaluable contribution to improving the health of Utah’s refugees,” by Jewish Family Services for helping “repair the world,” and by the Utah Community Foundation as one of the “Enlightened 50.”

Jan Jenkins, PhD

Jan Jenkins is a clinical psychologist and the Director of the Colorado Refugee Wellness Center. She is a graduate of the University of Colorado and is certified in global mental health through the Harvard Trauma and Recovery Program. Dr. Jenkins has worked extensively in the trauma, integrated care, and refugee mental health arenas and has presented at the North American Refugee Health Conference. She has directed several grant-funded projects pertaining to enhancing health equity for refugees, utilization of refugee health navigators to enhance efficacy of healthcare, and development of culturally responsive systems of refugee integrated care. The CO Refugee Wellness Center is a collaboration between primary care and mental health partners: Metro Community Provider Network and Aurora Mental Health Center. It is located in Aurora, CO, one of the most diverse cities of its size in the country and home to the majority of refugees in the state. Metro Community Provider Network, under contract with the Colorado Refugee Services Program, provides medical screenings for newly arriving refugees and Aurora Mental Health Center partners to provide mental health screenings. Ongoing integrated primary and behavioral healthcare is also provided.


Additional Resources

This webinar was the third installment in a four-part series on integrative healthcare settings.  For further discussion on this topic, view the following links:

Language Access Webinar

The National Partnership for Community Training is pleased to present the webinar:

Language Access: Understand and advocate for your clients’ interpretation rights

See the webinar here.

See the powerpoint presentation here.


  • Provide overview of relevant language access policies, such as the Civil Rights Act Title VI and ACA Section 1557
  • Identify Medicaid reimbursement implications for direct service staff and healthcare staff
  • Explore advocacy ideas when working with healthcare organizations


Mara Youdelman
Mara Youdelman is the managing attorney in the National Helth Law Program’s (NHeLP) Washington D.C. office. She has worked at NHeLP for more than a decade on issues that include Medicaid, health reform, language access, racial and ethnic disparities, and data collection. Recognized as a national expert on language access in health care settings, Mara has written a number of reports and participated on expert advisory panels on the subject. She is co-author of Ensuring Linguistic Access in Health Care Settings: Legal Rights and Responsibilities and Language Services Resource Guide for Pharmacists. Mara also directed the National Language Access Advocacy Project, funded by the California Endowment to increase awareness of language access issues at the federal level, and served as a Founding Commissioner on the Certification Commission for Healthcare Interpreters ( She was named a 2011 Language Access Champion by the National Council on Interpreting in Health Care and a 2010 Health Reform Champion by the Summit Health Institute for Research and Education.

Teresita Ramos
Tere Ramos joined the Massachusetts Law Reform Institute (MLRI) as the Language Access attorney in 2015.  She currently focuses her work in ensuring access to justice by limited English proficient (LEP) and Deaf and hard of hearing communities statewide in Massachusetts in all legal areas, including education, healthcare, housing and benefits.  Prior to joining MLRI she was an attorney at the Disability Law Center (DLC) focusing on special education issues related to the Hispanic community across Massachusetts.  Prior to joining DLC, Tere was the Executive Director of Special Education Advocates, a special education and disability advocacy focused on underserved LEP communities.  Tere is the Co-Chair of the Massachusetts Department of Education’s Special Education Advisory Committee, and is a member of the Massachusetts Autism Commission’s education sub-committee.

Domestic Violence Webinar

The National Partnership for Community Training is pleased to present the webinar:

Domestic Violence: Individual, Systemic, and Community Impact


See the webinar here.

See the powerpoint presentation here.


  • Provide an overview of the legal and policy-level impacts relevant to refugees and DV
  • Discuss issues refugees and resettlement workers face when clients experience domestic violence post-resettlement
  • Identify common challenges and potential solutions for creating a community of service providers dedicated to helping survivors of DV


Elena Dineen
Elena Dineen is a Staff Attorney for Programs at Futures Without Violence.   Her work at Futures focuses on the workplace impacts of domestic and sexual violence, building collaborative responses to human trafficking, and issues related to the intersection between intimate partner violence and immigration.  Prior to joining Futures, Ms. Dineen was a Directing Attorney at California Rural Legal Assistance, Inc. in Salinas, California, where she represented farmworkers and other low-wage workers and their families in employment, education, housing, and immigration cases and litigation.

Limia Obadi
Limia Obadi is the Domestic Violence Program Manager at Tapestri. She is originally from Ethiopia. Her family is from Yemen and she grew up with both middle-eastern and Ethiopian culture. She first began working with Tapestri as a volunteer in March 2009, and started working as a Legal Advocate in February 2010. Limia is very involved with the Ethiopian community in Atlanta. She has been involved in various workshops and has been providing culturally appropriate services for the immigrant and refugee population. She coordinated and organized focus groups and various media advertisements within different communities focusing on efforts to end violence against women and girls. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology and a Master’s degree in Public Administration. Limia is also a BIA accredited representative and helps survivors with immigration petitions such as VAWA, UVISA and Battered spouse waiver.  Limia speaks Amharic, Arabic and English.

Suicidality Among Refugees

The National Partnership for Community Training is pleased to present the webinar:

Suicidality Among Refugees: Program Approaches and Community Responses 

See the webinar here.

See the powerpoint presentation here.


  • Discuss research conducted on refugee suicides and subsequent recommendations for stakeholders
  • Highlight current grass roots initiatives addressing suicide prevention and intervention with refugee communities
  • Identify common mental health perceptions within refugee populations and suggestions for improved program responses to suicidality


Sharmila Shetty, M.D.
Dr. Sharmila Shetty currently works as a medical epidemiologist in the Emergency Response and Recovery Branch at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta. Dr. Shetty completed her medical degree at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, and after completing her residency in Pediatrics at North Shore University Hospital in NY, she worked with refugees and internally displaced populations as a clinician with Doctors without Borders/Medecins sans Frontieres (MSF) in Lebanon, Uganda, and Sudan. She completed the Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) Fellowship in applied epidemiology at the CDC from 2002-2004, after which she then spent a year doing post-tsunami recovery work in Banda Aceh, Indonesia with the Red Cross. From 2009-2014, Dr. Shetty worked as a medical epidemiologist in the Immigrant, Refugee, and Migrant Health Branch at the CDC, during which time she was a co-principal investigator on an investigation into suicides among Bhutanese refugees in the US.

Chhabi Sharma, MBBS
Dr Chhabi Sharma is originally from Gaylegphug Bhutan. He has worked in Bhutan as the District Medical Officer. After he became a refugee, Dr. Sharma worked for eight years with UNHCR in Nepal, caring for Bhutanese Nepali refugees. He completed his psychiatry residency at Hennepin-Regions Psychiatry Program Minnesota in 2011, where he served as Chief Resident in Psychiatry. He is currently a Board Certified psychiatrist working at HealthPartners, and spends part of his clinical time at HealthPartners Center for International Health. Dr. Sharma has recently  been appointed by the University of Minnesota, Global Health Program as the Nepal Site Coordinator for Global Health Faculty.

Henny Ohr
Henny Ohr is Co-Founder and Executive Director of EMBARC (Ethnic Minorities of Burma Advocacy and Resource Center), a community led grassroots organization dedicated to supporting refugees from Burma resettled in Iowa.  Prior to joining EMBARC, she was the Executive Officer for the Office of Asian and Pacific Islander Affairs and the Status of Women at the Dept. of Human Rights, where she advocated for equitable access to resources for marginalized communities.  Ms. Ohr immigrated to the US from Korea as a child, and has been committed to working for immigrant and refugee rights throughout her career.  Ms. Ohr received her J.D. from the City University of New York School of Law.

Mental Health Interpretation: Program Structures and Funding Challenges

The National Partnership for Community Training is pleased to present the webinar:

Mental Health Interpretation: Program Structures and Funding Challenges


The objectives of this webinar are to:

  1. Provide an overview of three different program structures and approaches to providing interpretation
  2. Discuss effective sourcing and training for mental health interpreters
  3. Identify common challenges to identifying and accessing funding interpretation for mental health

Download a PDF of the slides here.

Click the video below to view the webinar.


This presenters for this webinar include:

  • Brent Pace, L.C.S.W.
    Brent Pace is currently the Clinical Director at Utah Health and Human Rights(UHHR); a torture treatment program located in Salt Lake City, UT. Brent provides consultation, training, and outreach to partners and others in the community and supervises the clinical and case management staff at the agency. Prior to joining UHHR, Brent worked as a therapist at the Center for Human Potential, where he continues to do general outpatient therapy part-time. Prior to that, he worked with juveniles who had offended sexually, and directed the Salt Lake Observation and Assessment Program for Utah’s Juvenile Justice Services. He specializes in working with survivors of torture and serious trauma as well as those in recovery from sexual, organizational, and other kinds of abuse. Brent runs mind-body skills groups with certification through the Center for Mind-Body Medicine. He received his Bachelor’s of Arts Degree in French from Brigham Young University and his Master’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Utah. When he’s not working, Brent loves taking photos, reading and writing poetry, watching international and independent films, spending time outdoors, collecting bow ties, and regularly traveling with his husband to France.
  • Dr. Hawthorne Smith, Ph.D.
    Dr. Smith is a licensed psychologist and Clinical Director of the Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture. He is also an Assistant Professor at the NYU School of Medicine in the Department of Psychiatry. Dr. Smith received his doctorate in Counseling Psychology (with distinction) from Teachers College; Columbia University. Dr. Smith had previously earned a B.S.F.S. from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, an advanced certificate in African studies from Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar, Senegal, and a Masters in International Affairs from the Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs. Dr. Smith speaks extensively at professional conferences and seminars on providing clinical services for survivors of sociopolitical violence, and enhancing cross-cultural clinical skills among therapeutic service providers. Dr. Smith was also a co-founding member of Nah We Yone, Inc. (a non-profit organization working primarily with refugees from Sierra Leone, as well as other displaced Africans), and has helped to coordinate the International Youth Leadership Institute (IYLI), a leadership program for New York City teens. Dr. Smith has led these teenagers on summer fellowship programs to diverse countries such as Senegal, Gambia, South Africa, Egypt, and Israel. Dr. Smith is also a professional musician (saxophonist and vocalist) with international experience.
  • Sylvia Acevedo, L.L.M.
    Sylvia is the Program Director overseeing the Florida Center for Survivors of TortureRefugee Resettlement, and VOICES Interpreter and Translation programs operating in Hillsborough, Pinellas, Miami-Dade and Broward Counties. Ms. Acevedo has over 20 years of social service experience devoting the last 13 years of her career to specifically overseeing programs for victims of gender based violence.  She attained her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Lynn University and a Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree in Intercultural Human Rights from St. Thomas University School of Law.

Miami Refugee Youth Program Receives Sweaters


Once again Gulf Coast JFCS would like to thank TD Bank for the sweaters they donated to our Miami Refugee Youth Program. 40 sweaters were distributed to refugee teens from Cuba earlier this week. The first question that our clients had when we gave them their sweaters was how much was it going to cost. When we explained that it was a donation form TD bank, they wanted us all to know how thankful they were.  TD Bank donated more than 5000 sweaters to Gulf Coast JFCS and we have distributed the sweaters to hundreds of clients around the state.  To learn more about Gulf Coast JFCS’ work with refugees

Refugee Youth Services client participates in US Refugee Youth Consultation in D.C. 2/20

Refugee Youth Services youth client, Matthew T. from Congo, participated at the U.S. Refugee Youth Consultation in Washington, DC on February 20-22, 2016.Mathew 3 Mathew 1

Mathew is 19 year old Congolese refugee who arrived to the U.S in August 2015. Mathew is taking GED classes, and his goal is to become a doctor dedicating his life to helping others.

The conference was sponsored by UNHCR, the United Nations agency that serves refugees internationally. The goal of the U.S. Refugee Youth Consultation was to hear the voices of a diverse set of refugee and migrating youth on their experiences during the flight from their native country, during the stay in the asylum country, as well as their life in the United States.

Mathew and other sixteen conference participants from the nation attended workshops focusing on promoting dialogue and providing an environment for refugee youth to build alliances and networks at a national and global level, to emerge as leaders, and provide participation and a voice from refugee youth resettled in the United States at the 2016 UNHCR-NGO Consultations at Geneva Switzerland.

Refugees: Roads To Success


“Refugees: Roads To Success” PREP, the Digital Video Production Department of Pinellas Technical College, St. Petersburg, and Refugee Services of the Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF) have combined resources to create revealing documentary film about how five refugee adults and one refugee student overcome individual challenges to achieve vocational and academic success in the Tampa Bay area. The video is featuring former Gulf Coast JFCS Refugee Youth client Samson Uwimana.

Samson, 20 years old Congolese, was discharged from RYS on April 2015. RYS nominated Nora Khaleel, and she was filmed for the project, but PTEC staff decided not to show her story

Reducing Refugee Mental Health Stigma by Leveraging Refugee Community Leaders to Educate Providers

The National Partnership of Community Training is pleased to present the webinar:

Reducing Refugee Mental Health Stigma by Leveraging Refugee Community Leaders to Educate Providers

Refugees face many stressors adjusting to life in a new country. This webinar will focus on reducing the stigma around mental health issues from providers and within refugee communities by leveraging refugee community leaders to engage with providers and relevant agencies.
The objectives of this webinar are to:
  1. Discuss strategies for reducing mental health stigma within refugee communities
  2. Discuss strategies for reducing mental health stigma by providers
  3. Understand the benefits of establishing partnerships between community leaders and mental health clinics
  4. Understand the benefits of performing outreach to state and health coordinators, as well as to agencies, to advocate for refugee mental health issues
This webinar is presented by:
  • Parangkush Subedi, MS, MPH, Health Policy Analyst at the Office of Refugee Resettlement
  • Nancy Kelly, M Ed, Public Health Advisor at SAMHSA

Download a PDF of the slides here

Click the slide below to view the webinar

  • Parangkush (PK)  Subedi, MPH, MS, is a health policy analyst who joined Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) in early July from the Philadelphia Department of Public Health.  At the health department, he served as a refugee health coordinator, facilitating the evaluation and treatment of infectious diseases among newly arrived refugees and immigrants.  Previously, he worked at a refugee resettlement agency (HIAS-PA) in Philadelphia, overseeing initial health screening of refugees as a case manager and health coordinator.  Mr. Subedi has been actively involved in mental health and suicide prevention activities for Bhutanese refugees in various cities.
  • Nancy Kelly, M Ed has had 30 years of experience in the field of education. Ms. Kelly is currently employed as a public health advisor at SAMHSA. She works for the Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS). Before arriving at CMHS, she served as a project director and senior training and technical assistance specialist with Education Development Center, Inc. Ms. Kelly was assigned to work with the National Center for Mental Health Promotion and Youth Violence Prevention providing training and technical assistance on the Safe Schools/Healthy Students project and the Tribal Youth Program. She served as Project Director for the Improving Mental Health Assessment and Service Delivery for Youth Expelled from Schools in California study funded by the California Endowment Fund. Ms. Kelly also served in grant programs related to substance abuse prevention and intervention, mental health prevention/early intervention, academic success, violence prevention, and social/emotional well-being.

Information Guide: The Role of Advocacy in Capacity Building

The National Partnership for Community Training is pleased to present the Information Guide: The Role of Advocacy in Capacity Building.

This information guide can assist you in advocating for greater support for your agencies in order to better assist your clients. The bond between advocacy and capacity building led to the signing of the Torture Victims Relief Act by President Clinton in 1998 and its subsequent reauthorization. Continued advocacy can strengthen the refugee resettlement program by guaranteeing that refugees, torture survivors, asylees, and asylum seekers are given the utmost support upon resettlement in the U.S. thereby leading to successful integration.

Download the information guide here
In addition, NPCT has collected additional resources to assist you in your advocacy campaigns:

A new life for a survivor of torture

Staff & Survivors interviewed by El Nuevo Herald speak of the impact of the Florida Center for Survivors of Torture a program of Gulf Coast Jewish Family & Community Services funded by the Office of Refugee Resettlement and the United Nations Fund for Victims of Torture.

“FCST provides linkage to survivors through their network of providers that includes psychologists, social workers, interpreters, lawyers, and medical as well as others.”

The article can be read in English here


Central African Republic





Click the map to view the Country Condition Report on the Central African Republic




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

The National Partnership for Community Training, in collaboration with Tennessee Office for Refugees/Catholic Charities, will be hosting a training on July 22-23, 2015 in Nashville, TN 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 nationally-recognized experts in the torture treatment field from the Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture and the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma.

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

Please register by Monday, July 13, 2015.

CLICK HERE for more information and to register.


Information Guide: Assisting Refugees in Applying for Disability Exceptions for U.S. Citizenship

The National Partnership for Community Training is pleased to present the Information Guide: Assisting Refugees in Applying for Disability Exceptions for U.S. Citizenship

This information guide informs refugee service providers and community leaders, as well as clinical and legal professionals, about the criteria and process for seeking disability exceptions for citizenship. It addresses the general requirements of Form N-648, Medical Certification for Disability Exceptions from a legal, medical and psychological perspective.

  • Download the information guide here
  • Download a PDF of the presentation slides here

USCIS Resources:

Information Guide: Working with Interpreters: Service Provision with Torture Survivors

The National Partnership for Community Training is pleased to present the Information Guide: Working with Interpreters: Service Provision with Torture Survivors.

Work with interpreters should be grounded in best practices, with creativity and flexibility to fit the context. Cross-cultural and trauma-informed skills are critical in interpreted services with traumatized refugees. We can anticipate, manage, and address challenges faced by refugees, interpreters and service providers.

  • Download the information guide here
  • View the webinar here
  • Download a PDF of the presentation slides here


Working with Interpreters: Service Provision with Torture Survivors

Work with interpreters should be grounded in best practices, with creativity and flexibility to fit the context. Cross-cultural and trauma-informed skills are critical in interpreted services with traumatized refugees. We can anticipate, manage, and address challenges faced by refugees, interpreters and service providers. Through the use of case examples from the field, this webinar will address how to provide and fully utilize interpretation, modes and styles of interpretation, best practices and challenges.
Participants will gain skills in:
  1. Conducting effective, culturally-informed, and trauma-informed services through interpretation
  2. Identifying and addressing challenges related to interpretation
  3. Training interpreters and care providers in use of interpretation
The objectives of this webinar are to:
  1. Enhance provision of services to traumatized refugees of diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds
  2. Increase awareness, knowledge and skills of service providers working with traumatized refugees
  3. Offer strategies for more effective communication when using interpreters
  4. Offer participants best and promising practices for working with torture survivors

[Read more…]


honduras_map CIA

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

[Read more…]

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

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

[Read more…]

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

[Read more…]

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.