Heal for Survivors


Holistic Care, Empowerment, Assistance and Learning (HEAL) Program

DSC_2681The HEAL Program is designed to help survivors by helping the healers. HEAL provides training, technical assistance, expertise, and resources to counselors, social workers, and healthcare professionals. HEAL believes in providing trauma-informed care and taking a victim-centered approach when working with victims/survivors of violence. It works to help professionals understand how to create such responses within the systems in which they work. HEAL invests in these individuals, the caregivers and crisis responders, who provide immediate treatment and long-term holistic care that survivors of gender-based violence need.

HEAL Program Objective

20141217-CLP_3667The objective of the HEAL Program is to bring global expertise to local communities.  We work with community leaders to build a model of holistic care that can be adapted to their unique healthcare setting and cultural context. Fundamentally, we do not seek to simplistically transport approaches from one society to another, but rather to provide forums for action-oriented discussion. Our collaborative workshops enable the sharing of holistic care and intervention techniques between counselors and healthcare professionals from different areas of expertise and communities.

HEAL India

We started the HEAL Program in India in 2013. Since then, we have received positive responses from our partners in India and the program has achieved important outcomes, including:

  • Bringing together disparate groups from all over India to network, share ideas, and collaborate
  • Teaching about the myriad legal, political and social factors that led to the development of a national network of rape crisis centers in the U.S.
  • Providing a forum for various stakeholders across different regions in India to discuss and adapt models of service, including trauma-informed care and vicarious traumatization, to the unique situations encountered in their communities
  • Emphasizing the importance of implementing a victim-centered approach for survivors that meets the needs of the person where they are.

DAWN’s trainers and advisers have worked with survivors of gender-based violence in a variety of cultural contexts. They bring years of experience and expertise to this work.

Our trainer and program advisors include:

  • Dr. Sujata Warrier, Director of Training and Technical Assistance at the Battered Women’s Justice Project.
  • Meg Bossong, Director of Sexual Assault Prevention and Response at Williams College.