Baobab Centre for Young Survivors in Exile – Surviving violence, creating hope, rebuilding lives


Psychotherapeutic Support

At the Baobab Centre psychotherapeutic work is rooted in the setting up of a safe and grounded space for our whole community and for individuals to allow the building of a therapeutic alliance between young people and the team. This may take a long time but is a priority of our work. 

We provide non time-limited individual psychotherapy, where personal difficulties are gradually explored, weekly (or more when required). Working with a regular interpreter when needed, our individual psychotherapists offer a stable, predictable space for the young people to try to understand thoughts and feelings that may leave them feeling overwhelmed. Psychotherapy offers a way of exploring past experiences as well as thinking about current fears, difficulties and frustrations. Together we try to help the young people to get to know who they are, to strengthen their sense of identity and their hope for the future. 

In group psychotherapy, young survivors of various profound human rights abuses meet others with similar experiences of trauma, prolonged grief and changes of culture. Young people may or may not be able to speak about their experiences, but all are encouraged to listen to their peers. Coping strategies and barriers to coping are discussed in the context of past and present, and hopes and fears for the future. The young people very slowly come to trust each other and recognise and acknowledge the diversity and different ways of coping that we all develop over time. Though trust takes a long time to develop in the course of the life of each group, the members become a huge source of influence and support for each other.

At Baobab our therapeutic approaches are very personal, so an approach that fits one young person may not be suitable for another.

average weekly attendance at individual psychotherapy
of young people attended group psychotherapy in 2023