Trauma Awareness exists to continuously involve refugee and asylum seekers fleeing from persecution and threat to life, in dialogue and discussion. We offer safe spaces to listen and be listened to, to give voice to unmet needs and to engage with the wider community with the expressed wish of building greater understanding and empathy.
Why is it needed?
There currently is an unprecedented global crisis with 65.6 million displaced people around the world. Among them there are nearly 22.5 million refugees, over half of whom are under 18 years old (United Nations High Commission for Refugees UNHCR).
In this context, with the growing need for shelter, safety and sanctuary and an estimated 118,995 refugees in the UK, we aim to address trauma related mental, emotional and physical needs that develop as a consequence of war and conflict.
What difference can we make?
Rissa Mohabir applies Trauma Awareness methodology of safe listening for trauma narratives recognising that pacing and managing memories is a necessary tool for building trust and support. The majority of the participants expressed that they were “bursting with stories” as they had not shared the extreme experiences they endured, even with their family and friends, partly as a cultural response but also the basic need for survival taking precedence.
An unexpected and pleasing outcome from the group narratives workshops was improved well-being such as better sleep, decrease in physical pains, more energy and release of traumatic stress.
We have seen the impact that these two simple acts: listening and telling your story, can have on the lives of us all.
Listening Project 2016-2017
For more information please see Productions & Publications 2017-2019
Our recent listening projects A Life Journey – Impact of War on Women highlighted the glaring omission of disability and impairments caused by war-related injuries in the stories around all refugee and asylum seeker communities.
Following an action research Symposium in October 2017 endorsed by Mohammed Elsharif – Bristol Public Health, it was agreed that Trauma Awareness would undertake the publication Disabled Refugees & Asylum Seekers with Specific Needs from War Injuries with the support of partnership refugee services, Rissa Mohabir and Dr. Michael Nelki. We will update you on our expected publication date.