Trauma Treatment International provides psychological services to victims of organised violence and support to the organisations that care for them, anywhere in the world.
Torture, trafficking, slavery and other forms of extreme trauma do immense harm, long after the violence has ended. Families and the support networks of victims of trauma also carry a heavy burden. And those who work in organisations caring for survivors often suffer from vicarious trauma and burnout.
Escaping torture, trafficking or slavery is just the first step towards recovery. We use evidence-based psychological therapies, working directly with those suffering the most extreme emotional pain, to help rebuild fulfilling lives.
Our organisation brings together the expertise gained by several decades of work with traumatised populations in a range of geographical and political situations in conflict environments and stable settings.
We set up TTI because we believe that working both with victims and the organisations that care for them is the best way to help recovery, build capacity and develop resilience. Through organisational assessments and support for self-care and burnout prevention, we seek to increase effectiveness and foster lasting change.
Our practice is evidence-based. Whilst good techniques exist for treating trauma, knowledge of best practice is still in relative infancy. We plan to learn from, and contribute to, the scientific research evidence in this field in order to help healing.
We know that torture, trafficking, slavery and other forms of organised violence attempt to destroy the human. We believe that warmth, kindness and respect must guide every response.
We work together
We value human connections: for themselves, to increase knowledge and for their power to facilitate psychological healing. We will collaborate with organisations of every scale because we believe in working together.
We listen and we change
Only by listening, learning, reflecting and adapting can we help those who have suffered most. We believe, particularly when working internationally, that learning is a two way street and the richness and the value of the work derives from this.
We work within a human rights based framework
We define survivors of torture, trafficking and slavery according to the relevant UN conventions but we will also acknowledge that the psychological distress caused by organised violence spills over beyond these boundaries: to families, communities and the organisations working to support them. We see healing and human rights as indissoluble.
We are informed by research on the psychological impact of trauma and the evidence for the effectiveness of various treatment methods. We acknowledge the limitation of the existing evidence and we believe in expanding scientific knowledge in this area.
We practise what we preach
Our intention is to have a working environment that models these values. We recognise the toll that working with trauma has on staff, and the adverse impact this can have on the people that they are seeking to help. We will create a working environment that promotes psychological wellbeing and protects against vicarious trauma.
Trauma Treatment International
Registered Charity Number 1175429
Dr. Brock Chisholm | Founder
Founder of Trauma Treatment International & Consultant Clinical Psychologist. Brock has over 15 years experience in the psychological assessment and treatment of trauma survivors.
He has assisted in the development and implementation of comprehensive services for trauma survivors internationally. He is also an advisory to several NGOs on self-care and prevention of burnout strategies for staff who work with traumatised populations.
Brock has provided expert witness in several high profile human rights violation cases in the UK and International courts. He is an approved expert for the Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative hosted by the U.K. Foreign and Commonwealth Office and an elected board member of the U.K. Psychological Trauma Society.
Polly Rossdale | Founder
Polly is an independent human rights consultant, specialising in asylum and human rights advocacy, research and project coordination. Polly has management and international programme development experience in the fields of resettlement, refugees and torture survivors in the non-profit sector.
She currently coordinates a project for the international law firm Reed Smith for refugee torture victims in Athens. She is a trustee of the refugee education charity, the Schwab Westheimer Trust.
Polly was previously a Deputy Director at human rights charity Reprieve, where she coordinated a rehabilitation project for former Guantanamo detainees in Europe, North Africa and South America. As part of this work she established the first multidisciplinary torture rehabilitation services for torture survivors in post-revolution Tunisia, working with Dr Brock Chisholm to train a local team of clinicians and social workers.
Polly previously worked at the Helen Bamber Foundation.
Dr. Katy Robjant | Founder
Katy is a Consultant Clinical Psychologist. She was formerly the Head of Therapy Services at the Helen Bamber Foundation, an organisation which provides psychological treatment to victims of human rights violations.
She currently based in the Democratic Republic of Congo providing psychological intervention for victims of sexual and gender based violence with the international not for profit organisation In Vivo.
Katy is considered an expert in Narrative Exposure Therapy and has provided training worldwide including in the UK, Sri Lanka, Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda and Ukraine.
Dr. Sarah Whittaker | Clinical Psychologist
Sarah is expert in the psychological consequences and recovery from traumatic events. She has substantial experience providing psychological treatment to victims of human rights abuses and organised violence.
She has a strong commitment to non-profit organizations working in conflict areas. She is partnered with several initiatives in the Middle East and Africa, including Northern Iraq and South Sudan, where she provides psychological treatment and consults on the development of psychosocial programmes.
She also provides expert witness for war crimes investigations and asylum tribunals.
“Changing how staff work with traumatised people”
We specialise in supporting organisations who work with victims of torture, trafficking, slavery and war. Staff at these organisations are at risk of both primary and secondary trauma because of the valuable work they do.
Our aim is to assist organisations to achieve their objectives more effectively by enabling staff to mitigate the effects of stress and trauma as well as capacitating them to work with traumatised people in the most compassionate way possible.
We work with organisations and individuals using a trauma-informed care approach.
TTI carries out trauma-informed organisational needs assessments to understand stressors and risk factors that staff are exposed to. The outcome of these assessments inform a bespoke programme of support for the organisation and its staff that will increase individual and organisational resilience.
TTI offers several services that support organisations and staff who work with victims of trauma from conflict, and organised violence to victims of slavery.
Trauma-informed Organisational Resilience Assessments: These are led by an experienced Clinical Psychologist, and identify risk, map current strengths and needs and increase resilience.
Training and Ongoing Support: Organisations are helped to implement identified organisational adjustments that increase resilience, which can range from organisational processes and procedures to softer practices around organisational culture. For example providing clinical supervision, staff counselling service or assisting in setting up a peer supervision program.
Personalised Resilience Plans: These are developed for each participating member of staff. High quality, personalised resilience plans have the power to inform and drive potential organisational change.
Tailored Training programme: Using trauma-informed, psychological and social approaches to mitigate the effects of trauma and implement tailored and contextual training programmes to address needs and skills gaps. These include Staff Care Programmes and Clinical supervision structures; which train staff on how to work more effectively with the victims of trauma the organisations serve.
Critical Incident Assistance: Despite the best planning and care sometimes staff or organisations are exposed to a critical incident. TTI helps to prepare organisations so that if something unexpected and traumatic occurs, their staff less adversely effected by it. We also provide after incident assistance in the most effective possible approach. Everything we do is informed by the best quality academic evidence.
Please follow the link below for more information on our approach, service model and strategy