Pre-assignment Psychosocial Training
Working in high-risk environments increases one’s risk of traumatic stress. Understanding the
potential psychological risks involved such as chronic stress and trauma allows us to recognize
that our automatic responses to danger are not only normal but necessary for our survival.
With awareness of our own responses to traumatic stress, we can learn how to mitigate the
occupational risks involved, therefore, making work enjoyable and sustainable. Areas of training are to include;
Understanding traumatic stress
Managing crisis and emotional distress
Managing moral injury
Sometimes unexpected and traumatic events may occur mid-assignment, affecting our ability to function optimally in our daily life. Though symptoms experienced after a traumatic event are
normal, they can be confusing and frightening. Interventions such as Psychological First Aid can help reduce initial symptoms of emotional distress by promoting safety, facilitate stabilisation by
dampening the distress symptoms, and facilitating access to appropriate care, therefore, promoting a healthy process of recovery.
Juggling multiple responsibilities on and off work without finding time to care for your own well-being can affect our productivity. Counselling offers an opportunity to explore different areas
of your life that keep you stuck, provide education to understand underlying patterns and develop effective coping strategies to promote resilience. Some of the benefits of counselling
include an increased sense of purpose, effective communication strategies, and reduced symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Trauma-focused therapy is offered when posttraumatic stress symptoms are distressing, persist longer than a month, and affect a person’s ability to work or maintain relationships. Interventions
such as Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) can help significantly reduce post traumatic stress symptoms with long-lasting effects without going into the long details of the
Head of Psychosocial Services
Zahra has been a psychotherapist and trainer for over 8 years. She is passionate about supporting individuals and groups who've been impacted by traumatic experiences that affect their capacity to cope with everyday life.
Over the last 4 years, Zahra has supported journalists and humanitarians in different capacities such as providing education and tools on how to manage distress and improve well-being in highly stressful environments.
Zahra's background includes an MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Rowan University, New Jersey, USA. Her experience includes working with individuals and groups in different contexts such as Afghanistan, East Africa, Europe and the United States.