Healing the Wounds of History [HWH] recongises the importance of psycho-social approaches to healing through self-awareness, understanding, forgiveness and transformation and integrates these well-researched methodologies in training of professionals, teacher education as well as conferences and other events.

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Healing the Wounds of History programmes are essentially different experiential journeys through which people become more aware that unresolved past wounds can continue to drive us to violence. These are often well-established but innovative approaches to healing, including the use of drama, storytelling, constellation work, deep spiritual reflection, expressive arts and so forth.

The HWH programme has been developed to help heal the deeper roots of violence. The causes of violence are often located in recent but also older and even ancient historical grievances, memories and traumas. These psychological roots, when drawing on perceived injustices, can become sources of violence, especially in acute times of crisis, fear and threat. These driving forces usually remain un-examined. By unfolding and deconstructing them, individuals can begin to understand where many prejudices and impulses for violence against the other are held and thereby take the opportunity to release them through forgiveness and compassion.

The HWH training is concerned with unearthing these deeply rooted identities so that we can begin to reframe/rethink the “self”, humanise the other and improve relationships. To develop capacities at the individual level, helps collective action and peace‐building efforts at the group level. This important work then actively supports political, social, economic, and civil endeavours.

From the HWH Team

Objectives

The HWH’s main objective is to create a community of change agents, field workers, teachers and other practitioners, who, after appropriate training, are empowered to apply the HWH approaches into their respective practices within communities in Lebanon. HWH features THREE core activities: HWH Training, Teacher Education and the Garden of Forgiveness.

HWH Training Programmes

Experiential journeys to develop awareness that without healing, compassion and forgiveness, unresolved past wounds can continue to drive us to violence.

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HWH Teacher Education

A focused training to enhance teachers’ capacities to connect and respond sensitively to refugee children’s psychosocial and holistic learning needs.

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Garden of Forgiveness Beirut

A sanctuary set in heart of central Beirut, amidst archaeological sites, churches, mosques and a shrine to Virgin Mary, expressing forgiveness and unity.

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Research

Latest updates on the HWH approach, process and research.

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HWH in Lebanon

In Lebanon, there remains an uneasy relationship to the wars in the past. The strong sectarian and social identities that had made the wars psychologically possible are still active and transmuting, further reducing trust and heightening fears.

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HWH in Rwanda

Rwanda is still trying to come to terms with its’ past, seeking novel ways to move towards a unified and peaceful future in a country where people are yet to recover from the history, divisions and genocide.

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ESPERE (Hope)

ESPERE (Hope) is designed to alleviate pain and grievances from old, past and present trauma or suffering and help individuals and groups regain their inner dignity and the ability to become free.

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