In the years since EMDR HAP was born out of the crisis in Oklahoma City, we have built a global network of volunteers who are personal witnesses to the success of EMDR treatment and who stand ready to respond to disasters wherever they may occur.
These thousands of licensed and trained therapists have committed personal time and expense -- and in some cases, have put themselves in danger's way -- all to advance the HAP mission of breaking the cycle of suffering and violence among trauma survivors.
To make full use of this tremendous resource, we need your help. We have identified three priority areas for which funding is critical in order to further advance our mission and goals:
to serve more communities in need, especially in developing countries wracked by war, violence or natural disaster, and in underserved populations in developed nations.
to understand risk and recovery factors for traumatic stress, and to evaluate, refine and customize training formats to best serve individual communities’ needs.
to maximize existing capabilities and build staff to more effectively coordinate our worldwide network of clinicians and maintain disaster-response readiness.
Expanding Training Missions
The core of the EMDR HAP mission is to provide specialized training in the treatment of trauma to clinicians and paraprofessionals – to give them the tools they need to effectively treat trauma survivors in their own communities as needs arise. These newly trained clinicians then become "ambassadors of healing" in their hometowns and regions, expanding the sphere of hope and resolution far beyond our direct reach.
How You Can Help: Support HAP "Ambassadors of Healing"
Sponsor an EMDR HAP volunteer for global outreach.
By funding the costs of travel and modest lodging, you can make it possible for a HAP volunteer to conduct on-site trainings for therapists in the communities where needs are greatest. A group of just four HAP trainers can teach scores of local clinicians in a
matter of days. In addition, a follow-up visit by one HAP specialist one month after the trainings to supervise and encourage the newly trained therapists in their initial work can have an enormous impact.
Support the development of native-speaking training teams.
There is a critical need for funds to support the specialized training of new trainers and program facilitators in countries where mental health services are insufficient. By doing so, you can help us create a community of native-speaking professionals within a given country who can continue to train other local clinicians in trauma treatment. This strategy has the potential to greatly increase the number of local therapists who can respond to the ongoing psychological needs of people in their communities.
Underwrite the costs of an EMDR training.
EMDR HAP is able to provide training workshops at no or low cost to clinicians in areas of need because of the generosity of our donors. This is an opportunity to make a direct impact on scores of lives, because each therapist trained goes on to treat hundreds or even thousands of people. The effects are exponential: based on our experience, covering the cost for just 10 therapists to be trained in EMDR has the potential to affect more than 500 people in a matter of months. The impact on families and communities can be extraordinary.
Think about it: you could break the cycle of suffering for literally thousands of people, and could launch a ripple effect of hope that perpetuates for generations.
Continuing Research & Evaluation
The success of EMDR therapy for trauma has been demonstrated in numerous published reports in leading psychology journals. In fact, there is more controlled research on the effectiveness of EMDR for treating post-traumatic stress than there is for any other
form of psychotherapy. This empirical evidence is critical to scientifically support the positive results that EMDR-trained clinicians are used to seeing in their day-to-day practice.
With HAP-initiated programs now operating in some 70 countries worldwide, it is essential that we continue to collect and analyze data on trainees and individuals treated in order to fine-tune our training programs to the needs of various populations. We must also continue to track long-term outcomes of EMDR intervention to identify critical factors that influence risk and recovery from trauma.
How You Can Help: Fund Specific Research Initiatives
Your contribution can help us pursue vital research projects. Below are just three examples of ongoing research for which funding is currently needed.
EMDR Therapy Outcomes in Palestine
The EMDR training programs in Gaza and Ramallah in August 2001 provided training to some 60 dedicated therapists working with traumatized adults and children. At the time of these trainings, a structure of peer-group consultation was established, as well as a systematic method of collecting data on the therapeutic outcomes of EMDR sessions.
Informal reports from these therapists indicate that EMDR is very helpful in relieving the chronic stress of their clients, even in the prevailing environment of ongoing tension and danger. (Current data-collection efforts are preliminary, to be followed by a more structured, systematic study.)
This program of research will have important implications, including providing critical empirical evidence about the use of EMDR in a population exposed to sustained violence and stress.
The research will also help us to determine the effectiveness of collaborative training programs such as these in areas of ethno-political and religious conflict.
EMDR and Antidepressant Use in Turkey
In Turkey, where a HAP training mission initiated in 1999 has resulted in a permanent trauma clinic in Istanbul:
A large number of people have benefited from EMDR therapy following two disastrous earthquakes.
Many of these people had been previously treated with antidepressant medications to address co-occurring depression.
Given the long-term side effects of antidepressants and their limited availability in many developing countries, it is important to understand whether EMDR therapy can impact the continued necessity for their use:
The study would track a large number of participants over a substantial period, with follow-up every three months to track results. The results would be used to appropriately plan future therapeutic interventions and better understand the interplay of antidepressant treatment with EMDR therapy.
Paraprofessional Training Programs
Many developing countries lack sufficient mental health services. In Bangladesh there are only 20 licensed psychologists and 100 psychiatrists for a huge population emotionally devastated by civil war and natural disasters. In such countries, it is critical to find effective ways to train local healthcare workers to administer trauma education and therapy programs to people who are suffering.
Using the model of emergency medical teams that use allied health professionals to administer certain procedures in the field, EMDR HAP is dedicated to developing programs that train paraprofessional mental health workers to help alleviate suffering in their communities.
These programs must be tested under rigorous supervision in selected "model" sites and evaluated for long-term effects.
Enhancing HAP Infrastructure
Our long-term goal is to maintain a comprehensive network of clinicians who are able to travel wherever necessary to provide treatment and training. So far, we have managed to fund programs throughout the world through the generosity of individual donors and volunteers. In order to take our organization to the next level and truly maximize the potential for expanding our sphere of healing, we need to enhance our existing infrastructure to more effectively support our volunteer-driven humanitarian programs.
How You Can Help: Earmark Funds for Infrastructure Support
Funding is needed to support full-time staff positions and administrative support in the following areas:
Training Director/Volunteer Coordinator to manage the growing network of clinicians who donate their time to HAP, including outreach, support, and recruitment; to supervise, evaluate and follow up on ongoing projects, and to develop specialized training programs in areas that have shown the greatest needs. These areas include:
Trainings for paraprofessionals who can provide critical mental health services in areas underserved by mental health professionals;
Trainings for agencies serving children, particularly for special needs such as sexual abuse, neglect, youth at risk, or institutionalized youths;
Individualized trainings geared to the specific needs of a target country or region. For example, in Africa, there is a critical need for training modules tailored to deal with grief or loss from AIDS.
Development & Communications Director to drive the expansion of our core program initiatives, coordinate development activities to ensure the continuation of HAP programs, and manage communications to all relevant audiences. Duties would also include liaison and coordination with humanitarian agencies within the U.S. and abroad, and outreach to community-based organizations in areas where HAP services may be needed.
Disaster Readiness Fund to support the personnel needed to coordinate our Disaster Mental Health Recovery Network, which helps to organize local clinicians and offers free referral of persons in need of mental health services to private, volunteer therapists.
This operation also offers training and support for therapists in the communities.