Survivors International was founded in 1990 by a clinician who felt compelled by a deep sense of betrayal by his own profession when he read a medical article about doctors’ and psychologists’ roles in designing and carrying out torture in many parts of the world. We grew out of this need to serve the population of refugees and immigrants who had survived torture and/or war trauma in their home countries. While the torturer’s aim is to destroy the victim by inflicting excruciating physical pain and terrifying mental abuse, the goal of Survivors International is precisely the opposite: to strengthen and rebuild a sense of self and trust in humanity.
In 2012, Survivors International became a program of the Trauma Recovery Center (TRC) at the University of California, San Francisco and San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center. TRC’s clinically-proven model of compassionate, cost-effective clinical care for trauma survivors was awarded the 2004 National Safety Net Award for Patient Services by the National Association of Public Hospitals. As a program of the TRC, Survivors International continues to provide comprehensive services to survivors of torture and gender-based violence. Our clinical model is interdisciplinary, team-based, and client-centered.
Through the generous support of our community, services are provided to our clients at no cost. Survivors International also provides training programs for clinicians, individuals and agencies working to improve their understanding of the experiences of torture and migration, and its psychological impact on the individual, to enhance our community’s capacity to provide excellent service to all survivors residing in our area.
Survivors International would like to thank the following donors for their ongoing support:
Isabel Allende Foundation
Sarlo Foundation of the Jewish Community Federation and Endowment Fund
van Löben Sels/RembeRock Foundation
United Nations Voluntary Fund for Victims of of Torture
United States Office of Refugee Resettlement, Services for Survivors of Torture