What We Do
Many people from refugee backgrounds have experienced traumatic events before arriving in Australia. Some people have been tortured, others have escaped from persecution and conflict and many have been separated from loved ones. All have been forced to flee because there is nothing that they could do to stop the persecution and trauma.
Trauma affects the way people feel, think and act and can overwhelm their ability to cope and engage with others. Trauma can affect a person for many years and in many ways. Common symptoms include fear and anxiety, difficulty with relationships, feeling sad, hopeless and confused. Trauma is tiring. Peoples’ situations can be made more difficult by the stresses of settling into life in Australia.
People who have experienced trauma often ask:
Why did this happen to me?
Will I ever feel safe again?
Will I ever feel like myself again?
Will I ever feel like i belong somewhere again?
If people do not have the opportunity to heal, they may act out their pain in harmful ways including abuse and addiction.
If healing is happening, I can imagine my future.
– QPASTT Client.
Supporting recovery across mind, body and spirit. Healing enables people to reduce distress, overcome trauma and restore wellbeing. Ways to support healing include talking to someone, reducing trauma symptoms that impact on daily living, restoring safe and healthy relationships and strengthening culture and identity.
Trauma can feel lonely and frightening. Bringing people together in safe places where they can talk about their experiences, build trust and feel empathy is an important step towards recovery.
If people don’t have the opportunity to heal from trauma, they can unknowingly pass it onto future generations. Their children may experience high levels of stress, difficulties with attachment and disconnection from their culture and community. Thriving is about improving the social determinants of health so that families have less stresses and are able to reduce the risks of intergenerational trauma for children.
The nature of oppression and persecution means that peoples’ trust in humanity has been shattered. Upholding human rights so that there is equity of outcomes and inclusion for survivors of torture and trauma in our society is vital for restitution of justice and recovery.
Trauma Recovery Goals
We support individuals, families and communities to overcome trauma reactions and achieve the following recovery goals.