Psychological reactions to war and trauma

a webinar series for psychologists, psychology students and other helpers.

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The main objective of the current project is to disseminate knowledge about reactions to war, trauma, human rights, and how psychological expertise can help, and prevent aversive psychological consequences of fleeing a war situation. Particularly, focusing on strategies to respond to the crisis, and to meet the urgent psychological needs of those affected. Also, providing accurate and evidence-based information helping those (e.g., volunteers, aid workers) who are working with the war-affected populations.

These objectives will be accomplished by developing a webinar series and teaching materials distributed to psychologists and psychology students in Norway, Ukraine, and neighbouring countries that accept refugees. The objective is for these helpers to be able to assist and provide psychological assistance to civilians and internal refugees in Ukraine and refugees in neighbouring countries, and asylum seekers in Norway.

Video Introduction

This video introduction is hosted by:

  • Bjørn Lau, University of Oslo, Head of Department of Psychology

  • Svitlana Y. Paschenko, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, Faculty of Psychology, Deputy Dean for Research and International Cooperation


A video of a lecture covering various topics will be made available on this website each week and on other channels such as YouTube at predetermined weekly intervals, starting in week 21, running till week 26. These lectures will be given by experts in their field and will cover topics such as Children in war, sexual violence, forced migration, sexual violence and human rights.

Lecture 6 Marianne Opaas on "Forced migration and trauma":


Lecture 5 Anette Bringedal Houge on "Sexual violence":


Lecture 4 Tine Jensen on "How can we understand and support trauma exposed children? Some things to do":


Lecture 3 Helen Suizu Norheim on "Helping pregnant women and parents with infants and young children facing war, insecurity, and trauma":


Lecture 2 Nora Sveaass on "Human Rights violations in war and its psychological consequences":



Lecture 1 Ragnhild Dybdahl on "Mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) in humanitarian emergencies":



Overview of zoom-discussions and reflection

All times are in Norwegian:

Week 21, seminar on zoom: Friday 27th of May, 10 AM - 1 PM (Norwegian time) Ragnhild Dybdahl, The Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) in humanitarian emergencies

Week 22, seminar on zoom: Thursday 2 June, 9 - 11 AM Nora Sveaass, University of Oslo: Human Rights violations in war and its psychological consequences

Week 23, seminar on zoom: Thursday 9 June, 9 - 11 AM Helen Suizu Norheim, University of Oslo: Helping pregnant women and parents with infants and young children facing war, insecurity, and trauma

Week 24, seminar on zoom: Monday 13 June, 10 AM - 12 PM Tine Jensen, University of Oslo: How can we understand and support trauma exposed children? Some things to do  

Week 25, seminar on zoom: Monday, 20 June, 08 - 10 AM Anette Bringedal Houge, University of Oslo: Sexual violence

Week 26, seminar on zoom: Tuesday 28 June, 9 - 11 AM Marianne Opaas, Norwegian centre for violence and traumatic stress: Forced migration and trauma


Following the lectures we will arrange a 1-hour zoom-webinar which will feature a dialogue and debate between the lecturer from the video in question and participants who have viewed the video online. The zoom-discussion will be in English and translated to Ukrainian. One translator will translate the actual discussion. Ideally colleagues in Ukraine will moderate the discussion session.

Closed supervision groups

 As a separate initiative, which is planned will focus on closed supervision groups for psychologists/helpers in Ukraine (and potentially Poland). This initiative is based on a collaboration between the Department of Psychology, University of Oslo and the Ukrainian universities. The idea is to set up supervision groups for Ukrainian psychologists and people working with refugees by building a collaboration between PSI and Ukrainian universities and to see what the Ukrainian psychologists need, and how the PSI could best support them. We aim to establish groups with one PSI employee and 5-6 people working in Ukraine/Poland and intend to hold up to 3 supervision/ dialogue sessions per group. As indicated above, the idea is to use these groups as a sort of closed supervision and/or safe dialogue group. The language of the groups will be either English (if all the people involved speak English), or we will try to facilitate via a translator so that the participants can speak Ukrainian.

Working group at PSI

Members of the working group are Gulnaz Anjum, Milan Obaidi, Nora Sveaass, Sigrun Marie Moss, Lasse Moer (IT-AV), Ann-Cathrin Coenen and Alice Nordquist.


The working group at the Department of Psychology will collaborate with Ukrainian professionals at the Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv's Faculty of Psychology (TSNUK). We also collaborate with Anna Gebinska at The SWPS University of Social Sciences and Humanities (with whom our contacts at TSNUK have collaborated for a long time). Furthermore, they will promote the material through collaboration with Norwegian and international aid organizations like the Norwegian Psychological Association, Psychology students beyond borders (PUG) and the European Federation of Psychologists Associations (EFPA). Moreover, the working group at the Department of Psychology will collaborate with Mental Health and Human Rights Info (MHHRI), a Norwegian NGO, providing information on mental health and human rights).

Polish version Ukranian version

Published May 30, 2022 3:35 PM - Last modified Dec. 1, 2022 10:52 PM