As Phase 3 ends, it’s time for Phase 4: Continuing in the Community (Trauma Recovery for East African Refugees in San Diego)

The moon stays bright when it doesn’t avoid the night.
– Rumi

Hi everyone,

Have you been tracking recent developments in the region of eastern Africa? Nick Kristof of the New York Times recently offered a remarkable series on his most recent visit to Sudan, one aptly titled, ‘The Worst Atrocity You’ve Never Heard Of’. Prior to that, he was in South Sudan, and wrote, Tales of Horror Should Galvanize Obama.

Given these extremely horrific situations, we are glad to be able to offer trauma recovery for those who live locally.

As Phase 3 nears its end, it is time to start Phase 4: Continuing in the Community (Trauma Recovery for East African Refugees in San Diego). Continue reading

Phase 4: Continuing in the Community (Trauma Recovery for East African Refugees in San Diego)

After years and years of working in this and grappling with this, the conclusion that many of us are coming to is that in order to help these animal, frozen, inappropriate, fight/flight/freeze responses to come to an end, you need to work with people’s bodily responses. You need to help their body to feel like it’s over.
– Bessel van der Kolk, MD

Phase 4: Continuing in the Community

Trauma Recovery for East African Refugees in San Diego

Will you help us launch Phase 4?

Online fundraising for Phase 4: Continuing in the Community (Trauma Recovery for East African Refugees in San Diego)


There are over 20,000 refugees from East African countries (e.g. Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia, Uganda) currently living in San Diego.

If their homeland had been a safe place to live, they wouldn’t have become refugees.

Living Ubuntu, in collaboration with faculty from National University and local refugee organizations:

  • In December 2012 (Phase 1), completed a survey to assess the rate of Post-Traumatic Stress among refugees from East Africa living in San Diego.

The results confirmed high levels of unresolved trauma:

83% had endured traumatic experiences (e.g. forced evacuation, lack of food, water, access to medical care, violence, kidnapping)

♦85% were suffering from symptoms of trauma, ranging from mild to severe.

Why is it difficult for refugees to get help for trauma & PTSD?

  • In September 2013 (Phase 2), educated refugee leaders about trauma, PTSD and recovery by conducting a 6-week series that offered instruction in Tension and Trauma Releasing Exercises (TRE) and psycho-educational material. What is TRE?

Why does trauma recovery for refugees require a somatic approach?

  • In September 2014 (Phase 3), launched a pilot research project that included participants in Treatment and Control groups (gender-specific). TRE and psycho-educational material was taught in the weekly 2-hour Treatment group for 8 weeks and once-a-month for 3 months. All Treatment groups will reach completion by the end of August 2015.

What’s next?

Phase 4: Continuing in the Community

Continue reading

Water in CA: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly – July 23 (and lots more!)

“Live simply so that others may simply live.”
― Mahatma Gandhi

Hi everyone,

Okay, so we all know this. California has been suffering from extreme drought for years now. Here’s the question, how many of us really know enough about our local water situation and the complicated issues involved with it? And, as climate change continues, what can we expect, and what do we need to be doing about it?

By the way, did you know?

“By making one meal a week with lentils instead of beef, a family of four can save the equivalent of 17 bathtubs full of water.”
– Oxfam International, The Food Transformation: Harnessing consumer power to create a fair food future

Since this is such an important issue, Orange County for Climate Action (OCCA) asked Ray Hiemstra of Orange County Coastkeeper to come help us deepen our understanding. Thursday, July 23, please RSVP to join us for Water in California, the Good, the Bad and the Ugly.

Additionally, we are in the initial planning stages of several local items such as getting cities on board with Meatless Mondays, making solar power more accessible, and reducing OC’s food waste. This would be a great time to jump in with OCCA’s efforts. Our next planning meeting is this week. See details and additional upcoming events at the bottom of this email. Continue reading

Living Ubuntu Fundraiser at the Irvine Spectrum Veggie Grill, August 6, 2015 4p – 9p

A Fundraiser for Living Ubuntu

The Veggie Grill – Irvine Spectrum

***Thursday, August 6, 2015***
4p – 9p

Veggie Grill
Irvine Spectrum Center
81 Fortune Drive

You can participate any time between the hours of 4p – 9p on August 6.
When you place your order, just make sure to mention the fundraiser, or Living Ubuntu, and
50% of your food & beverage purchases will be donated to Living Ubuntu.

RSVPs not required, but appreciated:

Questions? Email:; Phone: (949) 891-2005

Can’t attend, but want to contribute to Living Ubuntu? Click here.

Intro to TRE – Fundraiser for Nepal this Sunday, June 14

Compassion is not a quality to be cultivated in isolation, aloof from life. It is easy to be compassionate from a distance, when your heart is undisturbed. When you are surrounded by those who love and care for you, when you have built a world where pain is repressed or ignored, you can easily immerse yourself in thoughts of love and tolerance. Yet that is a fragile world, built on foundations that will always crumble. Compassion speaks of the willingness to engage with tragedy, loss, and pain. Its domain is not only the world of those you love and care for, but equally the people who threaten you, the countless people you don’t know, the homeless person you meet on the street, and the situations of anger and hatred you recoil from. It is here that you learn about the depths of tolerance and understanding that are possible for each one of us. It is here that you learn about dignity, meaning, and greatness of heart.
– Christina Feldman

Hi everyone,

Sorry for the short notice. We have accepted the international invitation to participate in “Global TRE Shake… to Ground Nepal”.

This coming Sunday, June 14, 4p-6p, in Newport Beach, we are offering Intro to TRE – Fundraiser for Nepal. This event has a minimum suggested donation of $20.00. ALL proceeds will directly benefit TRE For All in collaboration with TRE-Humanitarian Support Asia (TRE-HSA) as they seek to: Create and Install a Sustainable TRE® Relief Program in Nepal for Long Term Earthquake Recovery.

Can’t attend, but want to contribute? DONATE HERE.

Still not sure what TRE is? Check out the videos below.

Want to join us on Sunday? RSVP:

(And bring a mat or blanket to lie down on, the room is not carpeted.)

See bottom of this email for additional upcoming events. Continue reading

“…widening our circle of compassion…” (and new TRE group starts tomorrow)

A human being is a part of a whole… [but] he experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest…. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty. – Albert Einstein

Hi everyone,

Last Thursday, Orange County for Climate Action (OCCA) had a great turn-out for, “A Conversation with Craig Preston: Solutions to Climate Change”. (See more about CCL’s Carbon Fee & Dividend plan here.) Then on Sunday, we had a lot of fun (amidst the seriousness of the topic) on our visit to the Southern California location of Farm Sanctuary. You can see the photos here. I had no idea how crazy-big the pigs would be, not to mention how ridiculously tall the full grown male steers were – wow! A little intimidating until you find out they are just as friendly and affection-seeking as a cat or dog. Continue reading

Solutions to Climate Change – Thursday May 28

Because, underneath all of this is the real truth we have been avoiding: climate change isn’t an ‘issue’ to add to the list of things to worry about, next to health care and taxes. It is a civilizational wake-up call. A powerful message—spoken in the language of fires, floods, droughts, and extinctions—telling us that we need an entirely new economic model and a new way of sharing this planet. Telling us that we need to evolve.
― Naomi Klein, This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate

Hi everyone,

Have you read, “This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate,” by Naomi Klein? There is a passage in the book where she talks about her own process around climate disruption denial. She knew, but didn’t, because she didn’t want to, or felt too overwhelmed by the thought of what she might come to know.

… it is always easier to deny reality than to allow our worldview to be shattered…
– Naomi Klein

Only when she came to see the great potential for positive change was she able to fully embrace it. Part of that shift meant she stopped thinking of climate violence as “somebody else’s issue”, something the environmental organizations would tackle. She began to see not just the need to cope with this rapidly unfolding crisis, but the possibility that adequately attending to the reality of this moment could land us in a vastly better place than ever before. Urgency itself could be the catalyst to mobilize the many to come together in a new and entirely different way. Climate catastrophe needs to not be viewed as an issue over there somewhere to be attended to by those who like dealing with that sort of thing. It in fact, “Changes Everything”. Continue reading