Building a Community of Healing for Survivors of Torture
We’ve helped more than 1,500 survivors from 80 countries around the world
90% of each dollar goes directly to services for survivors
We’re proud to be an accredited member of
the International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims
On the Front Lines
With an estimated 35,000 torture survivors residing in San Diego,
we’re based in one of the top destinations for refugees in the U.S.
“At SURVIVORS I was received. I started opening up.
Before, you trust nobody. Trust is the first move of healing.
Here I’d come and get peace. Here people are happy to see you.”SURVIVORS Client
If you have an emergency and are unable to contact SURVIVORS, please call the San Diego Access & Crisis Line at 1-888-724-7240 for immediate help. Confidential and free of charge, the line is immediately answered 7 days a week, 24 hours a day and can assist in 150 languages within seconds.
We Help Torture Survivors Get the Help They Need at No Cost
Services are tailored to meet individual needs and include crisis intervention, individual and family therapy, groups, home visits, and coordination with other providers.
Services include thorough evaluation of clients, medication prescription and management, and regular follow-up by a psychiatrist.
Medical affidavits conducted by physicians and psychological evaluations conducted by licensed mental health professions for submission as evidence in immigration proceedings.
Healing Club helps counter clients’ feelings of shame, humiliation, and isolation. Activities have included art projects, nature walks, and cooking classes.
Interpreters facilitate conversations among clients, our staff, and health care providers. We maintain a network of interpreters representing more than 30 languages.
Case Management Services
Case management services address emergency needs for our clients, such as food, clothing, and housing. Our team also distributes blankets, bus tokens, and hygiene items.
Events: Journey to Healing Tour
Join us and learn how Survivors of Torture, International is creating a safe haven for torture survivors, helping them to rebuild their lives, and building a welcoming community for all survivors.
Mana – Middle East
Mana was a landscape architect in the Middle East. In 1997, many municipal employees in Mana’s home town were arrested for political reasons. She was one of them. For 18 months, she was imprisoned and tortured. “I was in solitary all the time. I was like a blind person. I lost that time. I didn’t have any news from my family. As a single mother, I didn’t know the situation of my two kids.” Through the torture and the bad conditions of her imprisonment, Mana got into a really critical health situation. For this reason she was sent to the hospital from which she escaped to Turkey, then to the Netherlands where she stayed in a refugee camp. After four years, she was accepted by the United States as a refugee. In 2002 she arrived in San Diego.
Through SURVIVIORS Mana received medical and psychiatric care, as well as found a place to live. Mana says that SURVIVORS and other humanitarian organizations “are the only way that we can survive and adjust in this country. I think that SURVIVORS is my family, my second home. If they didn’t accept me and help me, I could have committed suicide or gone crazy. And it is not only me. There are many, many victims of torture who can get treatment, get lawyers.”
Mana is now a teacher in a school here in San Diego. She is thankful to be here and feels fortunate to have escaped, though many of her peers did not. “Most of them are in prison or executed. Or have a very bad situation. Many, many educated women, innocent people, are tortured-for nothing. I am the luckiest one that I am here.”