Component: Psychosocial Help
Emergence of Psychosocial Help component: Working with support systems of ASK to enable vulnerable children & women survivors of violence (mentally distressed, critically injured/insecure etc.) take resort to the justice system led to a new realization that for successful and sustainable support, it is important to provide psychosocial help in addition to safe shelter, follow up, medical and legal aid.
Objectives of Psychosocial Help component: Psychosocial Program is dedicated to promote and advocate counseling as a way to heal the effects of trauma and associated personal distress. Psychosocial Help extends counseling to survivors to overcome the feeling of defeat and fear. A critical aspect of promotion has been the attempt to institutionalize counseling training in the academic system of Bangladesh along with activism. Therefore to promote professional skills, ASK provides trainings on Effective Communication & Listening Skills, Basic and advanced Skills in Counseling with payment for different level of professionals.
Activities of Psychosocial Help component:
- Provide Psychosocial Help: The counselor of Psychosocial help unit provides counseling support to minimum 100 clients yearly referred by different units of ASK and to the inmates of the Victim Support Center, and the clients referred to Nirmal of ACSR for rehabilitation by ASK. Need based individual, couple and group therapy are used to empower clients towards emotional equilibrium and decision-making. Clients needing psychiatric help are referred to Psychiatrists of NIMH. It incorporates case supervision and follow up mechanism.
- Organize Counseling Orientation / Training: To enhance capacity of the professionals working in this field, Psychosocial component organizes both in-service and external training both at basic and advanced level with the help of overseas and local experts. Several orientation and dissemination forum are also arranged to generate awareness regarding the need of mental health support at the community level. By enhancing capacity in counseling skill, ASK is ensuring psychosocial help by more qualified professionals.
- Advocacy and Networking: Counselors Association of ASK provides a platform to create a networking among professionals to improve service delivery and advocates need of psychosocial support at policy level. Quarterly meetings are held to enhance skills and share experience among professionals. Liaison with Institutes/ GO/ NGOs to disseminate counseling concept and need for counseling is also a part of advocacy and networking. The publication “Unmesh” is a noteworthy achievement in this aspect.
- Initiating institutional degree in counseling: Continuous effort is undertaken for cooperation of relevant institutes in establishment of recognized degree in counseling in country to create a cadre of certified counselors.
- Individual, couple, family and group counseling
- Basic Skills in Counseling for trainee teachers of Teachers Training College, Dhaka
- Training on Communication Skills, Stress and Burnout Management ASK staffs and other NGOs on Request.
- Transactional Analysis 101 course for 50 participants from various organizations in May and September 2012.
- Certified Transactional Analysis courses for certified counselors completed Diploma in Counseling (TA & NLP)
- Supervision Skills in Counseling for counseling supervisors
- Dissemination & Networking
- Orientation on Effective Communication & Counseling Skills and other Mental Health Issues.
- Networking meeting for counselors
Achievements of 2011:
- A 1-year diploma course on Transactional Analysis in 2011 in collaboration with of ASHA Counseling and Training Services, Coimbatore, India.
- Establish an institutionalized course in Counseling.
- Provide more improved and intensive counseling service.
- Enhancing Capacity on Counseling with external and internal resources for increasing number of professionals.
- Building awareness for addressing mental health issues and counseling.
- Advocacy and networking in mental health issues and counseling.