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TWB-Supported Training on Psychosocial Counseling in Disaster Situations in Pakistan

TWB-Supported Training on Psychosocial Counseling in Disaster Situations in Pakistan

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Published by: Teachers Without Borders on May 24, 2012
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05/24/2012

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TWB Supported Training on Psychosocial Counselingin Disaster Situations in Pakistan
Thanks to the support Teachers Without Borders (TWB) USA incollaboration with Potohar Organization for Development Advocacy(PODA) organized a 4-day training for humanitarian relief workersand social activists and volunteers. Chengdu University, China andRoshni Helpline and Pakistan Association for Mental Health (PAMH) inKarachi supported the program as partners from 11th to 14th March2011.The participants included 20 women and 21 men representingNGO workers, nurses, students, psychologists, teachers, journalists,medical doctors, human rights activists, artisan, lawyers andcommunity development professionals.
 
 Mr. Yu Lu Wang, the volunteer member of Teachers WithoutBorders (also the Assistant Professor of Psychology from ChengduUniversity, China and Ms. Li Hong Xu, TWB China Country Coordinator(also a teacher from Teachers’ Training College, Chengdu University,China) conducted the sessions on techniques and skills forpsychosocial counseling in disaster situations. The two trainers haveextensive experience in providing psychosocial counseling to thevictims of 2008 earthquake in Sichuan, China.The training provided the participants orientation about assessingand handling patients with post trauma counseling techniques indisaster situations. The participants learnt about the IndividualCounseling Techniques and Group Counseling Techniques. Thetrainers used role play, practical activities, groups work and alsoheld sessions on Theories of Behaviorism to explain the essential skillsthat all counselors must have. The participants learnt hands ontechniques and skills.
 
 At the end of the 4 days training course the certificates distributionceremony was held at Hotel Sarawan in Karachi. Ms. Sameena NazirExecutive Director PODA, Mr. Yu Lu Wang, the trainer, Mr. SharfuddinMemon, Advisor to the Home Department, Government of Sindh andMr. Aamir Farooqi, Senior Superintendent Police (SSP), JamshedTown Karachi distributed the certificates. Sameena Nazir said that weneed to prepare for disasters in the times of peace so that we canprovide assistance to disaster victims in a professional and efficientmanner. She shared that in 2005 when Pakistan faced anunprecedented earthquake disaster PODA was not prepared torespond and we did not have staff trained in psychosocial counselingor disaster relief and response work.” We decided as an institutionthat we must build our capacity to respond to disasters effectively andprofessionally”, she said adding that now in 2011 PODA has 10 highlyqualified staff who can start and implement disaster relief projects inany part of the country. This training was part of our on-going work toprovide training to new PODA staff, volunteers and social activists tobe ready and keep on developing their skills and learn the newtechniques to work in disasters.

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