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NSW Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors

Supporting Refugee Women: Understanding Sexual Assault Trauma

Women make up 42% of the world’s 71.4 million asylum seekers and refugees (UNHCR, 2023). Shockingly, studies reveal that over 88% of asylum seekers have experienced sexual violence in their lifetime, with rape affecting 50.3% (Aguirre et al., 2020).  

These aren’t just numbers; they represent the profound traumas endured by countless courageous women. 

This isn’t random violence.  

It’s a web of oppression targeting women based on who they are. Gender, race, religion, it doesn’t matter. These attacks shatter lives, leaving deep scars – physical, emotional, and social. The impact ripples outward, affecting families, and communities, and silencing entire populations. 

However, amidst the darkness, there is hope. At STARTTS, we’ve witnessed the transformative power of creating safe spaces where healing can begin.  

In our master class, we delve deep into the cultural and psychological ramifications of sexual assault and rape, shedding light on the complexities of disclosure, shame, and guilt. Our expert speaker, Associate Professor Lata Satyen, a registered psychologist, will guide us through practical strategies to support women during disclosure, navigating through the tangled webs of shame, stigma, and guilt. 

Join us as we explore the importance of a holistic, community-driven approach to healing.  

Learn from Pearl Fernandes, a seasoned psychologist, and Veena O’Sullivan, our dedicated physiotherapist, as they share a compelling case study illustrating STARTTS’ integrative approach to assessment and treatment. Together, we’ll uncover the threads of cultural understanding, resilience, and empowerment that weave through every step of the healing journey. 

Don’t miss this opportunity to be part of a transformative experience that will not only enrich your professional toolkit but also touch the lives of those in need. Register now and embark on a journey of empathy, knowledge, and healing with us. Let’s make a difference together. 

Register for this live webinar on 22 May 2024, 3.30-5pm AEST for free: 


Watch the event recording for free here. Whether you missed the live session or want to revisit the content, you’re welcome to access the recording at your convenience.

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