2015 Lisbon Symposium on Crisis an Disasters Psychology - Preparing to meet the psychosocial needs of refugees and asylum seekers


Lisbon Symposium on Crisis and Disaster Psychology

‘Preparing to meet the psychosocial needs of refugees and asylum seekers’

Thursday 22 October 2015 Lisbon Portugal         Time: 9.30 – 13.30 hrs.

Venue: FIL (International Fair of Lisbon - auditório 1) Rua do Bojador, Parque das Nações 1998-010 Lisboa


 9.30 – 10.00    Opening and Welcome



                        Telmo Baptista PhD

                        President of the Portuguese Psychological Association

                        President of the European Federation of Psychologists Associations (EFPA)



Magda Rooze MA/MBA

Convenor Standing Committee Crisis and Disaster Psychology EFPA

Senior advisor Arq Psychotrauma Group The Netherlands


 10.00 – 10.30 Lucia Formenti MA

                        Representative of the Italian Psychological Association, Psychotherapist at the Psychotraumatology Research Center in Milan, EMDR practitioner


‘Vicarious traumatization of the operators working to support refugees and asking asylum in Italy’

 The presentation will give a general overview of the humanitarian catastrophe of refugees in Italy with a particular focus on the vicarious traumatization of the professional workers who are daily exposed to acute stress and highly traumatic events. Literature has clearly stated that they can be victims as well (Taylor, Frazer 1981), yet they could show short-term or long-term psychopathological disorders subsequent to vicarious traumatization (Mc Cann, Pearlman 1990; Danieli 1994). Supporting them is therefore fundamental in order to prevent buon out, avoiding pathological consequences, but most of all to protect recipients (Law n.81 of year 2008: consolidated act in workplace safety).


10.30 – 10.45  Discussion


10.45 – 11.15  Professor William Yule PhD,  Institute of Psychiatry, London United Kingdom, Representative of the British Psychological Association

 Dr. Kimberley Ehntholt, clinical psychologist at the Traumatic Stress Clinic at the Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust in London


                        ‘Refugee and asylum seeking children’

 The current refugee crisi is an acceleration of what has been happening worldwide since World War II.  The UN Convention on the rights of the Child is often overlooked.  The reactions of children to being uprooted and to facing an uncertain future will be described and some of the evidence based psychological interventions that can reduce their distress will be outlined.  The particular needs of unaccompanied minors will be highlighted

 11.15 – 11.30  Discussion


11.30 -12.00  Coffee break


12.00 – 12.20 Márcio Pereira MA

                        National Institute for Medical Emergency (INEM) Portugal, Representative of the Portuguese Psychological Association


‘Refugee Crisis – Psychology’s contribution to comprehension and intervention’

 Psychology can help understand the current refugee crisis in the light of social identity theories. This understanding may be a first level of intervention with decision-makers. It will also be addressed some considerations about the psychological support to the refugee population.


12.20 – 12.40 Maria Filippova MA

                        Centre of Emergency Psychological Aid of EMERCOM of Russia, Representative of the Russian Psychological Association


‘System of rendering psychological aid in emergency situations. The experience of psychological support in temporary accommodation to displaced persons from Ukraine’.

 The system of emergency psychological assistance in Russia. The experience of psychological support in temporary accommodation to displaced persons from Ukraine. The problem of preservation of mental health care in emergency situations. An example of the system model for supporting mental health in emergencies.


12.40 – 13.00 Marianne Straume MA

                        Center for Crisis Psychology Bergen Norway, Representative of the Norwegian Psychological Association


‘Family gatherings for refugee families in Norway’

Families with children were gathered for three days for intensive trauma groups for the children, and supervision for the parents in how to support their children. Professionals from the community where the children lived were observers in order to continue the work when the families returned to their homes in Norway.


13.00 – 13.30 Discussion and Conclusions