Refugee Experiences

Every survivor of torture and other traumatic events has a unique and moving story.

Most of the survivors of torture and trauma that we work with come to Australia as refugee or humanitarian entrants.

The pre-arrival experiences of our clients are characterised by exposure to persecution, violence, loss, human rights violations and forced displacement.

Survivors’ experiences in their home country and during flight to a safer place can include but are not limited to:

  • Torture
  • Imprisonment
  • Physical assault
  • Sexual assault
  • Separation from family members
  • Robbery
  • Being forced to inflict pain or kill
  • Having to witness torture or killing
  • Loss of close family members or friends
  • Extremely harsh environmental conditions
  • Malnutrition
  • Loss of property and/or shelter
  • Extreme fear and distress

Forced displacement means our clients may have had to flee from conflict, leaving home, possessions, family, friends and country behind, to walk or travel long distances to find a safer place.

After traumatic journeys, our clients may stay in a refugee camp, sometimes for many years, before gaining residency in another country if they are fortunate.

A significant impact of the experiences our clients endure is having been betrayed, either by their own people, by enemy forces, or by the politics of their world in general.

Our work is informed by, and centred in, the experience of each client, the stories they tell about their experience and ensuring their voices are heard throughout their contact with us.

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