Supporting refugees through early interventions: Assessment using the Vulnerability Screening Tool
Presenter: Mariana Martinez Vieyra, Clinical Supervisor + Provincial Refugee Mental Health Coordinator, Vancouver Association for Survivors of Torture
Date: August 28th, 2018
Mariana discusses the Vulnerability Screening Tool which has been developed by the Vancouver Association for Survivors of Torture (VAST) for use by mental and primary health professionals, as well as settlement and social service providers, private sponsors, and other community members who support refugees on arrival in British Columbia. This tool has been developed for the use of a broad spectrum of service providers throughout the province, who may or may not have experience working with refugees. This webinar outlines the components of the VAST tool, its potential applicability for working with immigrants and refugees, and what makes it effective as a screening tool when addressing mental health issues with immigrants or refugees.
Mariana Martinez Vieyra is a graduate of the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina and the UBC Counseling Psychology master’s degree program. She has 25 years of experience working with survivors of political violence and torture both in Canada and in Latin America. Raised and educated during the Argentinean dictatorship Mariana recognized the impact of torture on individuals, relationships and families, thus becoming very aware of the crucial role that community- building and social justice play in the healing process. When she moved to Vancouver 13 years ago she joined the Vancouver Association for Survivors of Torture (VAST). Mariana sees her work as a trauma counsellor as a way to raise her voice against torture, resist social injustice and fight for clients' human rights as well as their psychosocial well-being. For the last 13 years at VAST, Mariana has seen clients both individually and in groups and was VAST 's group therapy program coordinator and clinical supervisor. In December 2015 when the province of British Columbia launched the Refugee Readiness Project Mariana was appointed BC’s provincial refugee mental health coordinator.