Ufafa Valley near iXopo KwaZulu Natal is a rural area consisting of about 10 villages and appr 8000 people affected by HIV and AIDS and poverty, including orphaned children and their caregivers. A lack of basic infrastructure, water, electricity and health care contribute to the overall lack of resources and skills and therefore unemployment.
Unresolved trauma is widespread and this is well known to lead to substance abuse, violence including domestic violence, depression and high levels of chronic stress which often manifest in Hypertension, insomnia and Cardiovascular illness.
TRE® for Africa was invited by Sue Hedden, Director of Woza Moya NGO in iXopo, KwaZulu Natal, who is successfully serving the community for more than 15 years, offering Home-based Care, Child and Youth Care, Food Security, Paralegal services, Youth and Media and more. The NGO employs 35 Community Care givers and other staff to support their work. TRE® for Africa is training 6 members of ‘Woza Moya NGO’ to certify as Community Facilitators for Tension and Trauma Release Exercise (TRE®) and to be educated in the basics of Trauma Informed Care.
Via this training project, TRE®, which is essentially an empowering self – help tool, can be taught to many more members of the community. The TRE® community Facilitators will serve as a team of First Responders in case of traumatic incidents, having knowledge and tools to recognize and treat trauma related symptoms. Knowing about the physical-emotional impact of trauma and related symptoms, they will be instrumental in helping others to receive appropriate care and educate the general public about resilience and ways to prevent the occurrence of PTSD.
The first two days of TRE® Training for 6 people at Woza Moya NGO took place on the 13th and 14th of July 2016We are very greatful to the Director Sue Hedden and her staff for the provision of a safe (and beautiful) place, food and accomodation. We spent two days with the trainees, including 4 TRE sessions and teaching about Neurology and Physiology of trauma. All communication was done in English and isiZulu with thanks to Robin Vanderplank, Dumisile Mbantwa and Khanjisani Chiya for all the translation work !
After four months of TRE®, we asked our trainees to share their experience and this is what they said:
Two more days at Woza Moya, our trainees leading a group of youngsters through TRE®. What a blessing to see the work taking off and people being drawn to the simplicity of TRE® ! How confident and loving they tended to the group, it moved me to tears of gratitude.