the need for Trauma literacy, forgiveness and reconciliation skills,
Carefronting developed a training manuals on these two issues (entitled Trauma
Consciousness and Resilience (TCR) Basic, Advanced and Forgiveness and
Reconciliation (FaR), which was distributed widely within and outside
of Nigeria. Over 150 organizations within the country were reached, and the
manual was shared with representatives of 39 countries at international
conferences in Nepal, Kenya, Italy, Guinea and Morocco.
finally going to press Carefronting organized content taster workshops in
conjunction with the Alternatives to Violence Project (AVP) in London and
Scotland coordinated by a one of our trustees Grazyna Bonati.
Alternatives to Violence Project (AVP) was initiated, in 1975, by a group of
Quakers in New York prisons, to help prisoners reduce the violence in their
lives. This proved very effective but
since then it has also proved very effective in almost every context and
situation. AVP is now active in many
States in the US and about 50 countries worldwide. It has over the last almost 20 years been
used in several parts of Nigeria and always been received with great
are a few feedbacks from the workshop evaluation:
The two workshops provided us with an
awareness of the Trauma experienced by people in relatively peaceful countries
like Scotland as well as in war zones.
The workshop exercises and format provided opportunities
for reflective listening, sharing and the acknowledgement of differences
between us as well as the strong threads of our common humanity. I became aware
of the narrative therapy aspect to all of our AVP workshops as the workshop
Over the two weekends as we were able to
explore both the impact of trauma and the journey towards forgiveness and
reconciliation together as individuals and as an AVP community, an invaluable
and healing environment developed.
I owe a profound debt of gratitude to all who
facilitated and participated in the workshops!
Dear all, you have asked for evaluation
feedback. I stayed for the first day of the trauma workshop, but left
after the coffee break in the morning session on the Sunday. I had originally
hoped to attend day one of the forgiveness workshop (had
commitments on the second day); but realized it was better not to do half
The workshop aimed to
introduce participants to Trauma, to understanding trauma, types of trauma,
ways we can be traumatized etc. and possible personal traumas that participants
can have (known or unknown to themselves), with the aim of guiding them to
safety and allowing them to be able to ‘remember without reliving’.
The workshop was clearly a good
experience for others; and some of it was good for me. The reason I left was
that it was not what I had expected. I wanted to attend because I am
conscious we may be having more refugees and migrants in
Edinburgh, many of whom might be traumatized, and I wanted to
learn from Maji’s huge experience in Nigeria how I might help stand alongside
Maybe co-facilitating future such
workshops might be part of the answer.
But I found the usual AVP process
of learning from the group of less use than usual in the context of trauma. Some
people in the workshop had had
traumatic experiences, and as ever in AVP I found some of the small group work
illuminating and moving. But I felt very conscious that nothing in my life had
remotely approached the experience of say Syrian refugees from Aleppo.
Sharing a couple of difficult things from my life as an example
of personal ‘trauma’ felt like an inappropriate word in the ears of
anyone who had experienced real trauma.
I also felt we
spent quite a lot of time brainstorming things at length, for
instance loss, grief, and mourning, without being clear by the end of
the exercise exactly what we might be learning, and how it could be
applied in practice with traumatized and culturally dislocated refugees
We are all teachers and learners.
But there was clearly someone in the room (Maji) who has so much more
experience of it and how to heal it than the rest of us, with so many more wise
things and stories to share.
Grateful thank nevertheless for putting
this on, and all the time and thought involved. I have continued
reflecting a lot about what I heard. And following the workshop, I talked about
it with a friend of mine who is traumatized with illness, and how she might be
helped to move from loss and grief into mourning and acceptance.
I apologize for the late feedback about the
Trauma weekend workshop in Glasgow in March.
For me this workshop was powerful, emotional,
full of insights and what feels like enduring learning for me about trauma, my
own and how to better support others having experienced trauma.
I feel that I am still processing ‘stuff’
from both workshops. During the workshop I learnt some really useful ways to deliver
for example using support groups during the weekend and some of the exercises.
I found the first exercise we did, where we were invited into a circle and to
step forward when a statement applied to us.
Maji and Grazyna have exceptional facilitation
skills, it was evident that there is mutual respect. I learnt a lot from
their deep experience, they were the best of role models.
There seemed to be so many exercises,
many were deeply meaningful but facilitated at a
good pace and with a gentle, non-intrusive, yet supportive
I am keen to develop my skills and complete