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Facilitating groups with people from refugee backgrounds

Event Details
Date: 13th Sep 2019
Venue: Sydney, NSW
CPD hrs: 7

Concession: $199

Standard: $249

Organiser: STARTTS

This one-day workshop will give participants a greater understanding of the impact of torture and refugee trauma on group participation and dynamics, and how it can be effectively managed. It will cover the general principles of group facilitation in a cross-cultural context; and the things to be aware of and techniques to create a safe and engaging learning experience, to encourage a meaningful exchange of ideas, and to involve each member in thinking through different issues. Group facilitation tools and practical exercises to encourage meaningful participation will also be covered.

Workshop program

  • The refugee experience
  • Benefits of group work
  • Torture and refugee trauma and group dynamics
  • Stages of group development
  • Recovery principles
  • Effective cross-cultural communication
  • Fostering participation
  • Managing conflict and other issues

Learning objectives

  • To understand the refugee context including persecution and other types of traumatic experiences
  • To understand the complexity of issues faced by people from refugee backgrounds in resettlement
  • To understand how refugee trauma can impact on group dynamics
  • To know how to create safety in a group setting based on trauma recovery principles
  • To know how to manage issues when they arise in group settings
  • To understand the principles of cultural competence

Presenter details

Dr Lydia Gitau is currently working as a Training Officer at NSW STARTTS, and as a part-time lecturer at the Department of Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Sydney. She has previously worked as a counsellor and a lecturer in various universities in Kenya, East Africa. Lydia holds a Bachelor’s degree in Education, a Higher Diploma in Counselling Psychology, a Masters in International Relations, and a PhD from the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Sydney, exploring trauma interventions for South Sudanese Refugees in Kakuma Refugee Camp. Lydia was the recipient of the 2014-2015 International Peace Research (IPRA) Foundation’s Graduate Fellowship, and the 2014 Postgraduate Teaching Fellowship of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, University of Sydney. She is interested in examining and engaging in the post-conflict interventions that have potential to support long-lasting peace for survivors of conflict and mass violence.

Location and date


13 September 2019


Concession: $199

Standard: $249



AASW - Australian Association of Social Workers