Developing an African Torture Rehabilitation Model: A Contextually-informed, Evidence-based Psychosocial Model for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Torture: Part 1 – Setting the Foundations of an African Torture Rehabilitation Model through Research

Torture remains a reality in many countries around the world. As one of the largest recipients of refugees in the world, South Africa has become home to many victims of this extreme form of human rights violation. The impacts of torture are diverse and include biological, psychological, and social
dimensions. In many instances, the impacts of torture are exacerbated by additional, external
stressors that victims are exposed to, either directly or indirectly, related to their experience
of torture. The torture rehabilitation model under review focuses on psychosocial rehabilitation services for victims of torture within this context. Here, the focus is on the individual (rather than the family, group, or community). So, although work may happen with groups, families, and/or couples, at a centre or in the community, the focus is ultimately on the individual’s well-being and recovery.
This is largely focused on psychosocial support in the form of counselling/therapeutic
services, but may include referral to partner organisations and individuals addressing other
relevant issues (psychiatric, medical, economic, and legal) and support for application
processes to access legal status