The Independent, June 23, 2022
You’d have to have a heart of stone not to be moved by the stories of refugees
In our disconnected world, shared stories matter. They create a bridge, an opening for a different path away from violence. Zarlasht Halaimzai writes about the importance of storytelling in building understanding and empathy.
LBC News with Martin Stanford, June 22, 2022
The ECHR and a British Bill of Rights
Amna Founder and CEO Zarlasht Halaimzai joined Martin Stanford to discuss the UK government’s plans for a new British Bill of Rights and the impact that leaving the European Court of Human Rights will have on refugees and asylum seekers in the UK.
Haaretz, June 22, 2022
‘Long Live the Taliban!’ The Moment I Realised I’d Become a Refugee
In a first person piece, Maryam, a Sada storyteller, shares her story about how she realised she’s have to flee her home in Kabul and what people get wrong about refugees.
The Brookings Institution, June 21, 2022
Ukraine and beyond: Lessons in refugee education
Amna’s Founder and CEO Zarlasht Halaimzai joined this panel to discuss how refugees can be supported through their education.
The New Arab, June 21, 2022
Why Refugee Storytelling Matters for Healing
For refugees, storytelling and writing have become essential lifelines to keep their spirits alive and tell the world of their trauma. Amna’s Communications Lead explains why.
The Independent, June 20, 2022
Through ISIS territory and airstrikes: How I escaped Syria with my family
In a first person piece, Yasser, a Sada storyteller, tells his story about fleeing Syria and why it was important to share his story through Sada.
Women’s Media Center, June 10, 2022
Supporting Refugees’ Mental Health: ‘Often an Afterthought’
In an in-depth piece, Amna’s Founder and CEO Zarlasht Halaimzai spoke to Women’s Media Center about Amna’s work and why helping refugees find joy, safety and belonging is crucial is helping them to rebuild their lives.
The Economist, April 30, 2022
Ukrainian refugees need mental-health care that their hosts lack
Amna’s Head of Programmes Gabriella Brent spoke to The Economist about how Psychological First Aid can prevent the worst impacts of trauma, especially when delivered by those who understand refugees’ language and context.
France 24, April 14, 2022
Healing trauma: the NGO providing psychosocial support to refugees
Displacement can cause short and long-term trauma but despite this psychosocial support is often overlooked. Amna’s Founder Zarlasht Halaimzai joined France 24 to discuss the importance of psychosocial care and an equal, compassionate approach for all refugees.
Elle Magazine, April 01, 2022
Meeting the Woman and Children at Ukraine’s Polish Border
‘There are the immediate losses to count – people’s homes, their livelihoods… But war disrupts something even more fundamental than that: feeling safe.’ The Amna team were in Poland meeting women and children fleeing the war across the border – This is what they saw.
iWeigh Podcast, April 01, 2022
Healing Refugee Trauma
Amna Founder Zarlasht Halaimzai joined Jameela Jamil to discuss how her own experiences as a refugee informed the creation of Amna and why refunding a sense of safety is so important for refugees.
Ted Talks, March 31, 2022
5 ways that you can help refugees
Refugees will have lost their homes, family and friends and are forced to rebuild their lives in unfamiliar environments. But there are things that communities can do to help.
The Irish Times, March 28 2022
The Physical and psychological toll on refugees is huge
“People’s needs don’t stop at food and shelter. The need to feel safe is a fundamental human right. With this work, we recognise and acknowledge trauma without pathologising it. By helping people feel worthy and seen, we can dislodge the trauma and (try to) prevent long term health and relational impacts.”
SOAS SolidariTee society panel discussion, March 26 2022
Dismantling the myth of the ‘refugee crisis’
Amna’s Communication Lead spoke to SolidariTee about toxic media narratives about refugees and the psychosocial impact of them on refugees.
The Sunday Times, March 20 2022
Food, admin, their own TV – how to make a refugee feel welcome
“What is important is that hosts learn about trauma-informed care…Some people can go into shock…Others can be in a practical, go-go-go mode.”
NBC News, March 20 2022
Russia’s bombs and bullets not the only things killing Ukrainians — stress is, too
For adults, in addition to losing their homes and belongings, they can also lose a sense of identity, and many experience prejudice and discrimination.
BBC Radio 5, March 17 2022
Why education needs to be considered in refugee crises
“Children are incredibly resilient, if they’re given the right support.” Zarlasht Halaimzai spoke to BBC Radio 5 about why education needs to be considered in crisis.
Creative Brain Week, March 16th 2022
Creativity, Neuroscience and Equity
Zarlasht Halaimzai spoke about the healing power of creativity at Creative Brain Week.
The Lancet, December 11 2021
Zarlasht Halaimzai: striving to provide a better future for refugees
RTI’s CEO Zarlasht Halaimzai was profiled in medical journal The Lancet about her work providing psychosocial care and support to refugees and RTI’s trauma-sensitive and identity-informed approach.
BBC, December 07 2021
BBC 100 Women 2021
A former refugee from Afghanistan herself, Zarlasht Halaimzai is co-founder and chief executive of the Refugee Trauma Initiative (RTI), an organisation that provides psychological support to refugees and helps them deal with the emotional impact of violence and displacement.
The Impact Room, December 07, 2021
Unpacking the myth of the ‘good refugee’
In the politics of migration, refugees are either demonised as intruders or celebrated for their success. But how does this distinction of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ refugees shape policies and perceptions? And what is the effect on those who are defined by it?
Ted Talk, December 02 2021
Understanding the emotional fallout of violence and displacement is more important than ever.
War is dislocating. It gets inside your body and makes you into a thing – a corpse. It can dislodge empathy, hope and joy and replace them with fear. The fear that comes from living in the violence of war can break social bonds, disbanding the very communities that we rely on for safety.
Haaretz, September 30 2021
What connects the Holocaust and the Taliban?
As countries around the world begin to resettle traumatized Afghan refugees, they need specific care to recover and start new lives – and research into Holocaust survivors and their families can help.
America Dissected, September 07 2021
The 20 Years War with Zarlasht Halaimzai
It became very clear to me that one of the things that was really important was to address the trauma that people were experiencing because of the wars and because of displacement. And it also became very clear to me that there were very few interventions that specifically addressed that, and there were even fewer interventions that address this in a way that was identity-informed and understood the histories in the context of the people that they were trying to help.
Positive News, August 31 2021
Five Ways to Help Afghan Refugees Arriving in the UK
As refugees are resettled, many in people’s homes, it is vital that they are made to feel welcome. “Simple acts of kindness go a long way,” said Laramie Shubber of the Refugee Trauma Initiative, a non-profit that provides displaced people with mental health support.
Jewish News, August 25 2021
OPINION: Will parents send children alone?
Following the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan, Afghan women, human rights defenders, journalists and many more have been at immediate risk. Watching the panic and fear has been deeply distressing for many including ourselves. The events unfolding brought back memories for both our families…Our families know how it feels to desperately try to get your family to safety.
Sky News, August 20 2021 (Interview no longer available)
Support for Afghan Refugees
Gabriella Brent, RTI’s Clinical Lead, spoke to Sarah Hewson about the support Afghan refugees need, RTI’s work and why a trauma-sensitive approach is important.
The Guardian, July 20 2021
‘We tried to be joyful enough to deserve our new lives’: What it’s really like to be a refugee in Britain
To survive the journey, we needed stories of hope. For us, that story was safety in London, but the reality was very different.
Stories of Transformation, March 24 2020
The Basis of Human Survival (podcast)
If there is support available, then the potential of trauma being transformative is much higher than if people were just left to deal with these things on their own.
The Psychologist, October 2017
‘It’s not a crisis or a problem that we can sweep under the rug’
While around 1 per cent of the world’s entire population is currently displaced, including 22.5 million refugees, our awareness, and care for, their plight seems to fluctuate with the news agenda. History may look back on this period and wonder how it could have been ignored. Our journalist Ella Rhodes spoke to a psychosocial worker working at the heart of the crisis in Greece…
Philanthropy News Digest, April 18 2018
Obama Foundation Announces Initial Cohort of Obama Fellows
The Obama Foundation has announced the inaugural cohort of its Obama Fellows Program, a two-year, non-residential program that brings together civic leaders from around the around who are ‘creating transformational change.’ Selected from a pool of over twenty thousand applicants from more than a hundred and ninety countries…
Marie Claire, October 6, 2017
From a fashion leader to a humanitarian hero, meet our 2017 future shapers
If you can square it with your conscience, try anything and make it work.” That’s what my grandmother said to me when I was young. A lot of the families I work with had totally normal lives, working in schools or shops, or studying to be engineers. Then one day their lives just got taken away…
International Business Times, July 19 2017
Meet the Afghan refugee raising money for Syria’s war victims to get psychological support
Twenty years later, her story resonates with hundreds of thousands of refugees who are fleeing modern-day wars in what has been deemed the worst refugee crisis since World War II…
The Psychologist, November 2016
Exploring the unique needs of asylum-seekers and refugees
The health of refugees in camps is in jeopardy, she added: many are stuck in cramped warehouses, relying on aid, and are much more prone to communicable conditions such as flu or bronchitis…