Since the genocide of 1994, large sections of the population still suffer from severe traumadisabilities.

Because the country has only some very few psychiatrists and a limited number of psychologists, traumatized persons are treated and looked after by social workers, priests and otherwise qualified non-professionals. The aim of the TraumaAid project in Ruanda was it to convey skills in trauma therapy to those professionals, who already work with traumatized people, so that they can in turn teach other professionals later on in special training sessions. It was a training for trainers (»formation des formateurs«). EMDRtrainings took place, too. Furthermore teachers and priests, who are confronted with the consequences of traumatization of pupils and parishioners every day got instructions on how to manage traumatic crises. The project was sponsored by Evangelischer Entwicklungsdienst from Germany in cooperation with Protestant Council of Ruanda (Conseil Protestant du Rwanda, CPR), which also organized the subsequent training courses.

Project goals

  • Transfer of trauma therapeutic knowledge to specialists who work with traumatised people
  • Training for trainers

Project conclusion

  • Since 2009 until last training in resource oriented trauma psychotherapy in Kigali/Rwanda in cooperation with the Conseil Protestant du Rwanda (CPR), supported by Brot-für-die-Welt (formerly Evangelischer Entwicklungsdienst Deutschland EED)

  • Since 2010 basic training in dealing with traumatic crises for teachers, pastors and other professional groups

  • 2012 Foundation of Trauma Help Rwanda, a Rwandan NGO, whose members were trained by experts from TraumaAid Germanyand partly completed international EMDR trainings. The NGO is now officially recognized by the Rwandan government (President: Jamuel Muhayimana). The NGO offers individual trauma counselling, resource-oriented psychotherapy and EMDR as well as trauma-oriented training for teachers.

  • 2015-2016 Further training in resource-oriented trauma psychotherapy in Bujumbura/Burundi and Kigali/Rwanda for participants from Burundi with the support of the Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).

  • 2016-2017 EMDR training for participants from Rwanda and Burundi in Kigali, partly with support of the Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ)

  • October 2018 3-day planning conference for the Great Lakes region with the participation of experts from Rwanda, Burundi and Eastern Congo as well as Trauma-Aid to introduce low-threshold trauma-focused interventions.

  • 2019, we conducted another basic training in resource-oriented trauma psychotherapy in cooperation with Trainers from the local NGO Trauma Help Rwanda. This were made possible thanks to financial support given by Brot-für-die-Welt. Furthermore another teaching unit from the Training-for-Trainers sequence (2018-2020) was conducted. All future Rwandan trainers will be certified to teach resource-oriented trauma psychotherapy in conjunction with EMDR-techniques.