Press-release N 75/991
6 December 2007
TODAY, on the 6th of December a two-day training seminar for military psychologists was accomplished. The seminar dedicated to the program “Prevention of Suicides” was organized by “Mother’s Right” Foundation and by Independent Psychiatric Association of Russia in frames of project “Independent Expert Report on deceased military servants cases…” (co-donors: The Sigrid Rausing Trust, “Open Society Institute” – Budapest, “European Initiative for Democracy and Human Rights” of European Comission). The seminar took place in the building of Moscow State University of Pedagogics and Psychology.
“Mother’s Right” Foundation was one of the organizers of this seminar, and the reason is straightforward: the problem of suicides in the environment of militants is crucial: when engaging in cases of suicides, we often find that psychologists of military units some times do not possess necessary level of knowledge for effective accomplishment of their work. Participation in the seminar for military psychologists was free of charge. While we were preparing for the seminar we sent a lot of invitations to those military units, representatives of which we often encountered in the trial on suicide cases and pushing to suicides the soldiers. The fate of these invitations was quite interesting, because the list of actual participants of the seminar dramatically differed from the one, made by ourselves. In most cases people who did not receive our “special” invitation came to the seminar. They heard about the event from their colleagues or authorities (those actually invited to the seminar).
Finally, military psychologists from internal, cosmic and border troops from different regions of Russia (Chitinskaya, Kurganskaya, Sverdlovskaya, Moskovskaya and so forth) came to the seminar. Overall 28 people (15 of which were military psychologists from military units and 13 – students, studying to become military psychologists) participated in the seminar. Also the representative of General Directorate of education of armed forces of Russian Federation Chusovlyanov Mikhail Sergeevich assisted in the seminar.
The seminar was led by certified experts, who studied in Canada and have an experience of realization of such seminars in Russia: psychiatrist Anatoliy Borisovitch Bogdanov and social work specialist Igor Nazaryin. Two-day intensive interactive practical course of training was aimed at helping the participants to recognize and evaluate level of risk in context of suicide threat and at teaching them to interfere to prevent suicide. In frames of the course participants received theoretical material on evaluation of suicide risk and on measures of help where the threat of suicide exists, and also worked on and confirmed practical skills of interference aimed at prevention of suicide.
All participants were content with the training. After completion of the seminar many stayed in order to communicate with each other and discuss the conclusions of the seminar apart from the time allowed for training. As for us, we hope that eventually the program of the seminar will be included to the obligatory training course of educating military psychologists and specialists in education of military staff. =
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