It's been a busy couple of weeks for me-- I'm just getting back into school and trying to get stuff squared away for semester II. Last weekend, I traveled to New Orleans to attend a conference on African-centered Approaches to Trauma Therapy. I signed up back in November, after I decided I was going to DR Congo this summer!! It was really interesting, and I learned a lot!
A lot of the conference was about what we've learned about trauma treatment in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. So in that sense, it wasn't directly "applicable" to what I'll be doing in the DR Congo, but boy was it ever interesting!! I loved hearing the story from the mental health first responders-- it was so inspiring to know that "therapy" can be on the ground with anyone who wants it, instead of just being a 50 minute hour in an office building. The other thing I learned a lot about that I suspect I will definitely use is Ubuntu Psychology-- a therapeutic framework that is more holistic, and integrates ritual and spirituality into the treatment as a mechanism for healing. Such a cool concept, and I'm hoping to learn more before I leave.
A financial update-- This week I'm getting my student loan refund for semester II, so I'll be able to buy my plane ticket!! I am really excited!! (Thanks, UIndy!) Ideally I will be able to raise enough money to cover the cost of it, but the longer I wait, the more expensive the tickets will be, so I'm buying now and trusting that God will provide everything I need. This week I got my first donation, too-- thanks Josh!! Every little bit helps, so if you feel moved to give, please do!! If you don't have the money or you just feel moved to pray, that's okay too!! I appreciate everyone's love and support. :)