Manuals | January 25, 2018
Tree of Life
The “Tree of Life” is a psychosocial support tool based on narrative practices that is designed to help participants accept the hardships of their past and identify the strengths that can help them achieve a better future. It uses the different parts of a tree as metaphors to represent the different parts of our lives. The workshop generally takes one day. Participants draw their own “Tree of Life” in which they get to speak of their ‘roots” (where they come from), their skills and knowledge, their hopes and dreams and the special people in their lives. The participants then join their trees into a “forest of life’ and, in groups, discuss some of the ‘storms” that effect their lives and ways that they can respond to these storms, protect themselves and each other.
The "Tree of Life" workshop methodology was first developed by Anne Hope and Sally Timmel in 1984 and later expanded by REPSSI. The methodology helps avoid the re-traumatization that can be caused by the retelling of the original trauma without appropriate support. Instead, workshop participants strengthen their relationships with their own history, their culture, and significant people in their lives in a positive way. This “Third Edition for a Global Audience” was developed by CRS and is based on input from a Training of Trainers workshop held in Chennai, India in 2016, that was co-facilitated by CRS and REPSSI.