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Preventing Torture and Rehabilitating Survivors in Nepal

Bhogendra Sharma and Mark Van Ommeren

Center for the Victims of Torture, Nepal

Transcultural Psychosocial Organization

Published in Transcultural Psychiatry (March, 1998)




Preventing torture and rehabilitating survivors in a country that practices torture is difficult but possible. The Center for the Victims of Torture Nepal (CVICT) documents and treats torture survivors in four ways: (a) fact finding teams, (b) referrals to its clinic in Kathmandu, (c) prison visits, and (d) a community based rehabilitation program for Bhutanese refugees. In addition, the center also conducts research in four ways: (a) a quantitative matched-control study of tortured refugees to identify consequences of torture; (b) a case note survey; (c) a narrative study to identify local idioms of distress; and (d) focus groups to identify issues pertinent in the local context.