EARLY ACCESS to Adequate Therapy

The Project

The "EARLY ACCESS to Adequate Therapy" project is designed as a new short-term intervention approach specifically tailored to the needs of recently-traumatized victims of torture arriving in Europe. It will initially be implemented and adapted to local needs in two major urban areas of Germany (Berlin and Munich), where a growing number of victims of torture seeking protection in central Europe are initially received, and in Bulgaria, which is located on the eastern edge of the European Union and confronted with a large wave of victims seeking protection.


  • to provide newly arrived victims of torture with rapid multidisciplinary services (including assessment, psycho-social counseling, short-term psychotherapy and medicolegal support) according to the victims' immediate needs
  • to create a best-practice model of serving the needs of a large number of victims within a short period of time, to be shared with rehabilitation centers and other stakeholders in Germany, Bulgaria and throughout Europe
  • to promote the implementation of the EU Directive 2013/33 for the reception of applicants for international protection, specifically in Germany, through public advocacy and lobbying
  • to support the urgently needed services for torture survivors provided by ACET in Bulgaria


  • Identification, Treatment, Counseling and Follow-Up: immediate identification of needs among newly arrived refugees, initial assessment, intake interview and counseling sessions, psychiatric and/or psychotherapeutic assessment and medical reports, monitoring of children's well-being and educational counselling for parents if needed, psychiatric and/or psychotherapeutic treatment, intensive social-therapeutic support including social-legal counseling, follow-up psychiatric or psychological care, as well as social support and monitoring of child welfare, standardized psychological test, psycho-educational groups
  • Capacity-Building & Exchange of Best Practice: training, supervision
  • Lobbying Campaign: direct communication with political decision makers on a regional and national level, networking with representatives of the public health and social security system, seminars, information events and training for administrative decision-makers, dissemination of information on the effects of torture, human rights violations and the rights of survivors


REFUGIO München e.V. – Counseling and Treatment Center for Refugees and Torture Victims

Assistance Centre for Torture Survivors – ACET, Bulgaria

Project Runtime

01.07.2014 to 31.12.2015