Psychiatrist to travel the globe to help child victims of conflict

A child psychiatrist from the Department of Neuroscience, Psychology and Behaviour will be embarking on a global mission to raise awareness about child victims of trauma and build models of support to help them.

Professor Panos Vostanis will be travelling across eight countries and six continents throughout October and November as part of an international collaboration to promote awareness, safety and resilience-building for children.

Many of the children Panos works with have experienced war and ethnic conflict, displacement and violence - with many living on the streets in extreme poverty.

The objective of the World Awareness for Children in Trauma programme (WACIT) is to develop a model of psychosocial support for children exposed to complex trauma and adversity around the world.

As part of the programme Professor Vostanis will be visiting the following countries to help these vulnerable groups throughout October and November:

1. Athens (Greece) – refugee children

2. Istanbul (Turkey)- street and refugee children

3. Jakarta (Indonesia) – orphaned children

4. Sydney (Australia) – Aborigine families

5. Chicago (USA) – homeless youth

6. Campinas (Brazil) – children in favelas

7. Nakuru (Kenya) – victims of ethnic displacement

8. Dar es Salaam (Tanzania) – street children

Professor Vostanis said: “Our vision is to incorporate psychosocial support for every child who has experienced extreme adversity. This is the first time of providing a comprehensive type of help for children exposed to the most severe types of trauma, in different countries and sociocultural contexts.”

  • The University of Leicester’s student, staff and alumni communities are now self-evidently global.  Its students are increasingly studying abroad as part of their educational experience, and the University is active in research enterprise, teaching and capacity-building collaborations globally.