TAGBILARAN City, Nov. 8, 2013—In the aftermath of a magnitude 7.2 earthquake that devastated Bohol, a series of emotional first aid trainings is now ongoing to address the resulting emotional and psychological damage suffered by Boholanos.
In partnership with the local leaders of Couples for Christ (CFC), clinical psychologist Leo Deux Fils Delacruz gave the first in a series of emotional first aid trainings scheduled in the provincial capital over the week, to 33 faculty members and staff of BIT International College yesterday afternoon.
No psych training needed
A special session is also scheduled for the leaders of CFC tonight, depending on the intensity of wind and rains brought by super typhoon ‘Yolanda’.
Another training is set on November 9 at the Holy Infant parish, Valencia, Bohol from 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
According to Delacruz, having Boholanos trained in giving emotional first aid has a lot of advantages because they themselves experienced the earthquake and are in the best position to empathize with others who were more seriously affected by the calamity.
“One need not be a counselor or a psychologist to be able to do emotional first aid. Whatever your job is, even if you don’t have a job, you can give emotional first aid,” he explained.
Social empowerment, emotional growth
Emotional first aid is a simple protocol of questions that is designed to “revisit seemingly meaningless, terrifying, tragic, shameful experiences, and transform these into raw materials for emotional growth, social empowerment, hope, spiritual, deepening and fullness of life.”
Delacruz’ “emotional first aid” is largely based on the Critical Incident Stress Debriefing (CISD), but includes a few steps that recognize the universal spirituality of people or a core belief in a Higher Being.
In his book, “Emotional First Aid Kit: Psycho-spiritual Model”, Delacruz says, “Spirituality is the core of psychology. If people are unable to access this rich internal resource, secular psychological interventions will be incomplete. ALWAYS.”
Delacruz is free to give the emotional first aid training to any group or organization in Bohol until November 11. For interested parties, please contact 0917-9745992. The training is for free. [Nirva’ana Ella Delacruz]