Survivors and clients of CVT Fatumata, Rasha and Blaise
What We Do
At the Center for Victims of Torture, we are forging new ways to advance human rights and build a future free from torture.
Through mental and physical health care, research, training, and policy advocacy we are working towards our bold vision for a world free of torture. We provide a bridge between torture survivors, the local community and society as a whole, working to restore the dignity of the human spirit one survivor at a time.
Global Leadership, Home Grown in Minnesota
CVT was founded in 1985 in St. Paul. Torture survivors receive out-patient care at several locations, including our Healing Center in St. Paul. A team of healers provides medical and nursing care, psychotherapy, social services and massage and physical therapy.
Our international healing initiatives are in refugee camps and post-conflict areas where few mental health resources are available. We train local community members and refugees to meet the mental health needs of their compatriots for the long term.
We offer training around the world so that individuals and organizations can learn new and improved ways to provide healing services to torture survivors. We conduct rigorous evaluation and monitoring to ensure the work we do is effective, and share that research to improve the movement. And we demand justice from policymakers in Washington D.C. as well as locally in Minnesota and Georgia.
We saw 256 clients in Minnesota this year
from over 30 countries, including
Ethiopia, Liberia, Cameroon, and Burma.
Our Plans for 2023:
- Repairing the U.S. Refugee and Asylum Systems – America’s immigration and asylum system is badly broken. On the legislative front, the hard work our members have put into building support for the Refugee Protection Act could finally pay off next year with congressional passage of this legislation that would ensure the U.S. gives refugees and asylum seekers the protections they need and deserve.
- Providing Trauma Care at the Southern Border – Shocking scenes of Border Patrol agents on horseback assaulting Haitian refugees and the forced return of desperate asylum seekers prove the brutal treatment of people seeking safety in our country is an affront to our values. That is why we must devote more resources to providing direct and secondary trauma care at the Southern Border.
- Bringing Healing Care to More Torture Survivors – There is an enormous and growing need for CVT’s lifesaving care. The staff in our Healing Centers frequently have no choice but to tell torture survivors to come back some other time because we lack the resources to provide them with healing care. That is why we are eager to open new Healing Centers in Africa, the Middle East, Latin America and North America in order to serve more people.
- Rejecting Torture in All Forms – CVT has never been silent about government officials of any country or political affiliation conducting, condoning or defending torture. The U.S. is still reckoning with the fallout from its post-9/11 torture program. So CVT is still demanding reexamination of counterterrorism operations for possible prosecution of torture committed by U.S. personnel.
You are a welcoming light for survivors of torture.
In Minnesota it takes $10,000 a year to provide a truly holistic healing care for survivors of torture. $10,000 to journey with a survivor on their healing journey, as they get their first job in their new home, learn English, win their asylum case, and reunite with their family. You and I can walk with a survivor every step of the way. Thank you for making it possible for CVT to say yes to many women, children, men, people just like Fatumata, Blaise and Rasha.