EMDR for displaced persons of war in Ukraine
Artist (Lydia) a gift for our group.

Our Story

Our team was compelled to help the overwhelming and historic number of displaced person’s fleeing from Ukraine who had planned to settle locally. We wanted to provide free EMDR services to help alleviate post-trauma symptoms that often follow such life-threatening experiences.  Once we learned that obtaining an interpreter for each therapist individually was not only not very likely or realistic we realized we would have to come up with another way. Luckily Dr. Shapiro had already planned for such catastrophes after the Oklahoma bombings in the 1980s. Such a catastrophe launched the beginning of the EMDR Humanitarian Foundation which trains EMDR therapists to be able to provide free EMDR therapy to those who have been affected by disasters or critical incidents.  Given the high need of Ukrainian persons who will and now need our help, we decided that running an EMDR group would provide the most relief to many persons at once with one interpreter. After learning of the devastation in Ukraine our team of EMDR therapists that attend the EMDR peer group agreed to train with Dr. Ignacio Jarero. His published research shows that the group protocol known as EMDR IGTP – OTS provides excellent relief from acute stress symptoms caused by war, disaster or other critical events.

EMDR team for women who have been displaced by War

Our launch began in May with the help of the Maple Hope Foundation. We had 7 women attend our 2-day group. We had a wonderful volunteer translator step in at the last minute who has been with us ever since! In June we launched our second group in Maple Ridge with the help of Mary Robson and the Ridge Meadows Ukrainian Welcoming Committee where we were lucky enough to have childcare and volunteers for what was turning into a workshop.  Maple Ridge Refugees Receive Psychological Help Our third group ran in Richmond at Ivan Franko Society Hall where we had childcare, lunch and volunteers to create an environment of healing and community. Ivan Franko Trauma Workshop


Ulyana our extrodinaire Translator!

We are now officially a workshop that runs for two days. We have joined with United Way to effectively help keep this two-day workshop running providing help for displaced women of the war. 

What I learned

Being a part of Ridge Meadow’s welcoming committee taught me that those fleeing the war are not given refugee status but instead fall into a bizarre category called displaced persons of war. This category does not provide automatic MSP, mental health services or other services that are offered automatically to refugees. This is why our group has chosen to focus on women who are fleeing the war in Ukraine rather than helping all refugee groups. Until this need for mental health relief is no longer needed we intend to keep holding our free workshops for persons fleeing from war in Ukraine.

In order to continue providing free services, we require donations for interpretive services, food, and fees for obtaining a space. If you would like to donate to this worthy cause please click here  Help us Give Free Psychological Services to Persons displaced by War

Thank you To Our Sponsors and Hosts!

Maple Hope Foundation

Ridge Meadows Welcoming Committee

Ivan Franko Society

United Way 

Stay tuned for our next workshop Sept 17th- 18th 2022!EMDR workshop for women displaced by war in Ukraine

EMDR Trauma Recovery