Helping Refugees – Trauma and Transformation - an article by CTRI (Crisis and Trauma Resource Institute)
With millions of people needing to flee their homes and seek refuge in other parts of the world, the stories of refugee individuals and families will interweave with people all over the world. If you are one offering support in some fashion, how will your own story be influenced by theirs?
Many of us as helpers are familiar with stories of trauma, survival and recovery to different degrees. However, the emerging stories of refugees bring unique layers of the need to transform lives. They also show sometimes surprising outcomes of resilience and change in anyone’s life that is touched by this endurance of the human spirit.
On top of universal human themes of seeking safety, connection and security, the refugee story contains some very unique twists and turns.
Inherent in any refugee story is a trauma – a threat of loss. However, there are many layers of threat within any one story, often with no clear beginning or end. On the surface it would seem the threat ends once a person crosses the border away from violence and death. However threat to one’s sense of self can be much more nuanced.
Having to make choices one never imagined as part of one’s future, giving up one’s job, home, school, friends, community, culture – indeed one’s identity – sweeps the carpet out from underneath. Perhaps this is like an earthquake that doesn’t stop – the ground just keeps moving......
For more FREE RESOURCES on this topic and others, visit CTRI's free resources page .