Local Rwandan TFT Therapists Relieving Trauma

We would like to share with you reports by ATFT Foundation-trained TFT therapists at the IZERE Center for Peace and Reconciliation in Rwanda:

“When we observe change in the lives of the people we are treating using TFT, we really feel a deep joy in our hearts and all this is because of your generosity which pushed you to think about us, and your love for us, that led you to decide to send again the team from the USA to train Rwandan therapists who are now doing their best to help people using TFT.”

“What is pleasing us the most is that after the departure of the team from USA, now many people are coming every day at IZERE CENTER to be treated, the average number being 30 people a day, and we are trying our best to treat them and finish them all.”

“Thank you for TFT which we are using to heal the people.”

“Those who are treated tell us that TFT helps so much and do not cause any danger to them; this because our clients fully participate in what is being done to them by tapping where we tell them to tap according to their problem. We also see ourselves that their facial expressions change drastically after treatment. They do not remain the same as before treatment. We see that they are happy again and confident. We are happy and empowered when we observe such great change in the lives of suffering people. There is nothing better than seeing somebody smiling again after so many years without smiling. Many of them became our friends.”

“Many Persons are excited too about TFT, and they have shown interest in our work. They know we are there and we are working for the good of our nation. We are constantly in touch with them so that we can always carry out our work publicly. And The IZERE Center is becoming the model of social center in our District. Our dreams are to see TFT growing bigger and reach as many people who need it as possible. The work we do speak itself and makes us known even without our notice. After the training of the trainers, we will be able to make sure our dreams.”

“Many Rwanda citizens are living with trauma and other Psychological problem because of the genocide and the war, the poverty. Consequently, there is a really a big need for services like these for many Rwandan people. Thank you very much.”

There are still hundreds of thousands of yet untreated genocide survivors who suffer from PTSD in Rwanda. The Rwandans need to be trained as TFT trainers so they can train others to use TFT in their homeland. This year the ATFT Foundation will be training four lead therapists from Byumba and Kigali to become TFT trainers themselves.

They will be brought to Hawaii for an intensive month-long training. As part of this training, the Rwandans will train 16-20 therapists over two days. They will then supervise the Hawaiian trainees in their own pro-bono clinics that serve needy populations.

Please consider helping the ATFT Foundation with this project. If you are able to donate funds to this effort, please click here. If you can donate needed United Airlines mileage for flying the Rwandan therapists to their training in Hawaii, please e-mail sheila@atft.org.

TFT Transforming the Wounds of Genocide

By Caroline Sakai, PhD, TFT-VT:

2010 ATFT Foundation Deployment to Byumba and Kigali in Rwanda

The Rwandan community leaders in Byumba who were trained as TFT therapists in 2009 and 2010 have treated over 2000 people in their community. The Izere Center has established an ATFT Rwanda branch, and TFT treatment offices that are manned by volunteers and part-time practitioners twice a week treat an average of 30 people a day with TFT on those treatment days.

In the Bishop Servillien Nzakamwita of Byumba Diocese’s opening reception, a government official noted that traveling down the streets he noted that the people of the sector had changed from depressed and not working, not smiling, not waving—to being productive and positive, smiling and waving and greeting each other since the ATFT team had been there the previous year and the TFT treatments of trauma had commenced.

This year the ATFT Foundation team led by Suzanne Connolly included Caroline Sakai, Cyndie Quinn and Gary Quinn. Caroline Sakai and the team did a review and abbreviated diagnostic training for the 33 therapists trained in 2009.

Suzanne Connolly led an algorithm training for 34 new therapists. The 2009 and 2010 therapists were all community leaders selected from orphanages, education, clergy, social work, psychology, business, police, nursing, government service, and others by Father Jean Marie Vianney Dushimiyimana of Izere Center, principle priest of Nyinawimana Parish and Brother Augustine Nzabonimana.

Then both the previously trained and the newly trained Rwandan therapists treated 603 people from the community who were suffering from 667 traumas and related issues. For the 667 traumas and related issues the mean SUD before treatment was 8.4, and the mean SUD after treatment was 0.2. The median SUD pre-treatment was 9, and the median SUD post-treatment was 0. There were 518 females and 82 males treated.

The major problems treated were trauma, anger, rage, fear, sadness, grief, pain, anxiety, depression, guilt, shame, and phobia. For a few of the people who were treated that had more complex issues that algorithms did not fully address, the Rwandan therapists who had the diagnostic level training treated them with supportive supervision. The ATFT Foundation team provided supervision as needed.

Additionally some villagers who were treated the year before just came by to express their appreciation for having TFT in their lives, as they were no longer suffering from trauma, rage, anger, fear, guilt, and pain symptoms.

In Kigali previously trained therapists did a review, and new therapists were trained. Also many of the participants of the PTSD research project done in 2008 returned to do a two year follow-up on the same assessment measures. Many of the participants spontaneously shared about their progress over the past two years since treatment of their traumas and related issues.

As the forgiveness and reconciliation efforts to reintegrate the Rwandan community have been in progress for a few years now, a number of Rwandans mentioned wishing that they had had the tools of TFT earlier to help with healing the wounds of trauma, calming and fears and anxiety, and working through the rage, resentment and anger that many harbored deep within despite their many attempts to think, talk, wish and pray them away.

They expressed their gratitude at having more means of healing the hurts, resolving the rage, facilitating the restitution and reconciliation efforts, reaffirming their faith, and restoring their hope. For the ATFT team, it further encouraged our convictions voiced so clearly by the Rwandans one after another, that TFT must be made more widely available to help all genocide survivors, all who have suffered from large-scale trauma.


YOU Can Help Relieve Suffering from Trauma in Rwanda

In August, 2009, Dr. Caroline Sakai and Suzanne Connolly led an ATFT Foundation Trauma Relief Team to teach community leaders in Rwanda to use TFT to help their fellow Rwandans.

This training took place at the IZERE Center for Peace and Reconciliation in Byumba, and 36 community leaders were trained over a period of two days. The newly trained Rwandan therapists then treated over 200 of their countrymen and women for symptoms of trauma, and continue to do so today with the support of the ATFT Foundation.

The Foundation is completely supported by donations and has established a sponsorship program to help support the Rwandan therapists. Sponsors will be able to get personal reports, handled through the ATFT Foundation, from their adopted therapist. The cost to sponsor one full-time therapist for one year is $2000; $300 for a part-time therapist for one year; or $150 for a part-time therapist for six months. This is a powerful opportunity to make a stand for world peace!

If you’d like to sponsor a therapist, or learn more about this program, contact sheila @ atft.org. To see a summary of self-reports (translated into English) by the Rwandan therapists three months following the ATFT Foundation training team’s departure, click here.

TFT–from Trauma of Rwanda Genocide to Forgiveness & Compassion

The following is an article published in “The Thought Field”, Vol 15, Issue 2, by Caroline Sakai, PhD, TFT-VT:

Suzanne Connolly and I have been awed by the magnitude of the horrors that most of the genocide survivors endured and survived, with their resiliency, courage and perseverance. The women and men who were trained with TFT at the algorithm level were very caring, and reached out with their compassion and their newly learned TFT skills to treat very severe post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

It was immediately apparent that many who were the oldest child survivors in their villages that were decimated in the genocide of 1994, and who took on the responsibilities of looking after the younger survivors, never had the time or energy to grieve, to mourn, to even address or note their own feelings. They came in with dissociated states and blank stares, and said they never thought about, and did not want to think about, the genocide and had never talked about their own experiences. Continue reading “TFT–from Trauma of Rwanda Genocide to Forgiveness & Compassion”

TFT Relieves Horrific Trauma of Rwandan Orphan

Lynne McTaggart, featured in “The Living Matrix” and author of “The Field” and “The Intention Experiment, describes how TFT transformed the life of a Rwandan genocide survivor who witnessed the brutal murder of her father.

(from Dr. McTaggart’s newsletter “WDDTY” vol 20 no 8, pg 15):

“One 15-year-old Rwandan orphan was three years old at the time of the genocide. Her family hid her inside a church and when the killers broke in, the girl’s father told her to run and not look back, no matter what. She got away, but turned around when she heard her father’s screams–only to see her father being hacked to death by men with machetes.

Every day since, she’d suffered flashbacks of the scene in her waking hours and dreamt about it every night. In fact, she had no good memories of her family; the trauma had blocked them out.

During her treatment, she cried as she worked through each of the traumatic events while tapping but, at a certain point, she began to laugh. She’d suddenly remembered how her father had sneaked sweets for her, even against her mother’s wishes.

Later, when she tried to re-direct her focus onto the events that took place in the church, she said, “I can still remember it, but now it seems like a distant memory, like 12 years ago”. That night, her sleep was uninterrupted, with no nightmares for the first time since her father’s murder, and she arrived at school the next day in cheery spirits. Since then, memories of the good times have flooded back.”

TFT Transforms the Lives of Hundreds of Rwandan Orphans

A teacher at the El Shaddai orphanage in Kigali, Rwanda, describes how TFT continues to relieve the fears and anxieties of  hundreds of children who have lost their parents through genocide and imprisonment.