Guide for Caring for Refugees

/// Dealing with Traumatized People /// Many of the refugees are more or less traumatized. They’ve had to leave their homes, family members, friends, work, everything that provided security, etc. very abruptly. They usually had no chance to prepare themselves for these massive life disruptions and are now in a phase marked by fear, loss of control, grief and lack of perspective. Be aware of your limitations in helping traumatized people. Locate competent staff/ contact points for traumatized people in your area. At the same time, your behavior can do a lot to help refugees cope better with their trauma: • Signal openness and allow the refugees opportunity to share about their difficult experience, but without putting any pressure on them to do so. It’s possible individuals might not yet be in any kind of mental condition to do so. In that case, simply accept it. • Let individuals talk as much as they want, even if they repeat themselves. • Traumatized people should be allowed to express their fears and also their anger without being judged for it. • Let difficult experiences that are shared, stand. Try not to minimize or relativize them. • Try to give hope, but do not make false promises. /// Spiritual Offers /// • Offer to pray with your guests for peace, including for relatives and friends who remain in the crisis area. • Place a New Testament/Bible in their language in their room. For cell phones there is “YouVersion Bible”, which also contains a Ukrainian translation. • Respect the (religious) beliefs of your guests. Build trust and give testimony of your faith experiences when asked. Compiled by Liebenzell Mission / March 2022