Divisions

Trauma and Violence Division (TVD)

Objectives

The aims of the Division of Trauma and Violence of PsySSA:

In addition to the objectives of PsySSA and the functions of divisions as expressed in Articles 2 and 13 respectively of the PsySSA constitution, the mission of the TVD is to promote the minimisation of violence in society and psychological harm due to exposure to potentially traumatic events.  The TVD addresses this mission through the advancement and appropriate dissemination of scientific research that informs good preventative and ameliorative practice and the implementation of specific initiatives that addresses particular needs related to the prevention of violence or treatment of traumatic stress and related phenomena.  The goals derived from this mission are to be achieved in cooperation with other PsySSA structures, other professional organisations, the general public, and governmental organisation

Incentives for membership

Fees

Social media 

Exco members

Ashley van Heerden holds a Master of Social Science (Clinical Psychology) and a Master of Social Science (Research Psychology). She also holds certifications in Programme Management (University of Geneva) and Gestalt Therapy. Broad areas of interest include developmental trauma and working from a social justice perspective, particularly in relation to LGBTQIA+ rights and gender-based violence.
Chair

Trauma and Violence, PsySSA

Ms Ashley van Heerden

Ms Ashley van Heerden

Chairperson

tvd@psyssa.com
Bio
Ashley van Heerden holds a Master of Social Science (Clinical Psychology) and a Master of Social Science (Research Psychology). She also holds certifications in Programme Management (University of Geneva) and Gestalt Therapy. Broad areas of interest include developmental trauma and working from a social justice perspective, particularly in relation to LGBTQIA+ rights and gender-based violence. Ashley worked with the United Nations of South Africa implementing relevant, cost-effective human rights programmes within the South African context, assisting numerous NPO’s and being invited to present her work at national and international conferences.
Ms Sunitha Swanepoel

Ms Sunitha Swanepoel

Vice-Chair

sunithaswanepoel33@gmail.com
Bio
Sunitha Swanepoel holds a Master of Social Science (Clinical Psychology) from the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Broad areas of clinical and research interest include developmental trauma, psychobiography, culture, Afrikaner identity, masculinity, first episode psychosis, and decoloniality.  Sunitha’s honours dissertation, Oliver Reginald Tambo: A Psychobiography from an African Psychology Perspective, was presented as a poster during PsySSA’s 2019 annual conference and will be published as an article in the February 2022 edition of the Journal of Psychology in Africa.  She is currently completing her community service with the Department of Correctional Services and collaborating on numerous research projects.
Ms Rekha Kangokar Rama Rao

Ms Rekha Kangokar Rama Rao

Secretary/Treasurer

rekha.kangokar@gmail.com

Bio

Rekha is a registered student psychologist and is currently completing her M.A. Community-Based Counselling psychology at the University of Witswatersrand. She is actively involved in the community, applying the skills and knowledge acquired through academics and experience in life. 

Dr Ann D Watts

Dr Ann D Watts

Additional Member

anndwatts@iafrica.com
Bio
Ann has for many years been actively involved in developing neuropsychology in South Africa. She was President of the International Neuropsychological Society in 2015, to date their only President from a developing country. She is Secretary-General of the International Union of Psychological Science (IUPsyS) and their Main Representative to the World Health Organization (WHO).  She served on the WHO International Advisory Group for the Revision of ICD-10 Mental and Behavioural Disorders and was a member of the WHO Rehabilitation Competency Framework Technical Work Group.  Ann is Treasurer of the Pan African Psychology Union, Past President of the Psychological Society of South Africa (PsySSA) and the South African Clinical Neuropsychological Association, and chairs PsySSA’s Division of Neuropsychology and Forensic Psychology.

Ann completed her Ph.D and a Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in neuropsychology at the then University of Natal.  She is a Clinical and Neuropsychologist based at Entabeni Hospital, Durban.  Ann was an expert in the field (neuropsychology) at the University of KwaZulu-Natal until 2019 and a visiting neuropsychology lecturer at the Universities of Zululand and the Free State.  She is Editor of the International Platform of the International Journal of Psychology and a Consulting Editor of the Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society.

Dr Karl Swain

Dr Karl Swain

Additional Member

karlswain@gmail.com
Bio
Karl Swain is a Clinical Psychologist and Lecturer in the Department of Behavioural Medicine at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN), South Africa and is currently the Academic Coordinator and Intern Coordinator for the Department. Karl served two terms as the Chairperson for the South African Society for Clinical Psychology (SASCP), after a term as Secretary. Additionally, he has served for two terms as the Vice Chairperson for PsySSA’s Division of Neuropsychology and Forensic Psychology. Karl is currently the Chairperson of the Durban Practising Psychologists Group (DPPG) and Chairperson of the KwaZulu-Natal Branch of PsySSA. He was the local representative for the International Neuropsychological Society (INS) Student Liaison Committee for South Africa and Africa in 2017. His interests include: neuropsychology, traumatic stress, violence and resiliency.
Mr Daniel den Hollander

Mr Daniel den Hollander

Additional Member

danielhilbrand@gmail.com
Bio
Daniel den Hollander is a clinical psychologist who has worked in specialised mental health care, both in the public and private sectors. His expertise lies in voluntary, involuntary, and forensic treatment care, Complex PTSD and co-occuring addiction work. He has chaired the Psychology Professionals in Public Service Division of PsySSA from 2016-2021. During his term, PiPS became an established voice within parliamental NHI discussions and building key stakeholder relationships with other government departments (e.g. DBE, SARS). He is an activist for mental health care in South Africa. He is passionate about cultivating and promoting empowerment and change: may it be in the therapy room, on radio, at governmental stakeholder meetings, or at conferences. He is a regular feature on SAFM Living Redefined, and contributor for the Mail & Guardian.

News and Updates from the Division

Important emergency numbers

SAPS Emergency Services: 10111

Crime Stop: 08600 10111

Domestic violence Helpline: 0800 150 150

Childline: 116

Lifeline: 0861322322

The South African Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG): 0112344837

Suicide Crisis Lifeline: 0800567567

Trauma Helpline: 0800205026

Highlighted lectures and podcasts
Upcoming seminars and conferences

Psychological First Aid

The Psychological First Aid Operations Guide was developed by the National Child Traumatic Stress Network and National Center for PTSD. 

Psychological First Aid
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