See More

> Events > Browse by Branch/Location > New South Wales > Clinical and community interventions in early childhood with families from refugee backgrounds

Clinical and community interventions in early childhood with families from refugee backgrounds

Event Details
Date: 17th Oct 2019
Venue: Sydney, NSW
CPD hrs: 15

Concession: $299

Standard: $349

Organiser: STARTTS

Event date has passed

This two-day clinical workshop is informed by STARTTS’ research and is focused on the unique challenges of working clinically with children from refugee backgrounds under six years of age and their parents/caregivers who have experienced war and violence. It will explore how direct and indirect traumatic experiences impact on the mother and child pre- and post-natally. Consideration will be given to influences such as the developing nervous system, memory and attachment, potential delays in all areas of development as a result of the complex interactions of refugee-related trauma, ways to overcome barriers to engaging young children from refugee backgrounds and their parents in therapy; the importance of balancing structure with child-centred / relationship based following of the child, regulating emotions, using play, music and movement. Attention will also be given to how to act as a role model, mentor and supporter for parents. The workshop will discuss incorporating the family’s cultural beliefs in therapy and how to integrate an interpreter into sessions.

Workshop program

  • The refugee experience
  • Considerations and challenges of refugee trauma work
  • Clinical implications of torture and refugee trauma manifestations
  • Effective cross-cultural engagement
  • Comprehensive refugee clinical assessment
  • Formulating a case and treatment plan for refugee trauma
  • Psychoeducation
  • Trauma treatment strategies
  • Ending treatment and measuring clinical outcomes
  • Self care in the face of highly traumatised clients

Learning objectives

  • To understand who are refugees and the context of political conflict, organised violence and human rights violations
  • To understand the impact of traumatic experiences on the developing nervous system, defence responses and attachment
  • To understand the impact of torture and other types of refugee traumatic experiences on the mother and child (pre- and post-natally) and on the resettlement process
  • To know how to effectively engage with the parents and very young children from refugee backgrounds in clinical treatment
  • To understand the crucial components of a comprehensive clinical assessment in the context of resettlement in a new country
  • To understand how this translates into a useful case formulation to facilitate engagement and effective and targeted treatment
  • To understand useful treatment modalities for refugee trauma and the strengths and limitations of each with parents and very young children
  • To have an appreciation of transference and countertransference
  • To be aware of the impact of vicarious trauma and burnout and how to self-manage these

Presenter details

Nooria Mehraby MD is a senior clinician and clinical trainer at STARTTS. Herself a former refugee, Nooria has more than 25 years experience working with refugees both overseas and here in Australia. This includes over 20 years experience at STARTTS. Nooria first trained as a medical doctor in her native Afghanistan and later obtained a Master of Counselling with Distinction in Australia. Nooria is an experienced national and international conference speaker and is the author of multiple publications (including textbook contributions) on refugee trauma, cross-cultural approaches and working with children. Nooria has lectured in various universities in NSW and has facilitated clinical workshops across Australia. She is currently teaching trauma counselling as a part of the Master of Clinical Counselling at the Australian Catholic University. Nooria is the editor of Refugee Trauma and Cross-Cultural Approaches sections of the Psyche visual Online Journal, and was formerly the editor of Interface Column in Psychotherapy in Australia. Her particular interest is in developing cross-cultural therapeutic interventions with refugees, especially with Muslim clients. In her current position as STARTTS’ Clinician Trainer, she brings clinical expertise to STARTTS’ wide range of training programs and regularly delivers workshops to service providers. She has trained hundreds of clinicians working in trauma assessment and interventions. In 2015 she was the recipient of Australian Muslim Professional of the Year Award.

Location and date


17-18 October 2019


Concession: $299

Standard: $349



AASW - Australian Association of Social Workers