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There was a trip to Rwanda earlier this month,  to film a documentary on the work the Rwandans are doing using TFT. The Rwandans hope to serve as a model for other countries who have suffered large-scale traumatic events.  The filming went well, and of course, after hearing the stories of healing, the documentarians want to learn TFT!  I am attaching a journal of the 11 day trip for any of you who would like to hear about it. Suzanne M. Connolly, LCSW

The TFT Foundation efforts to make a film documenting the use of TFT in Rwanda got off to a superb beginning.   We landed in Kigali Rwanda the evening of the 8th of January.

Bob Stone, our documentarian, Diana Gross, his assistant and I were greeted at the airport by Father Augustin, organizer of the Byumba segments of the filming; Darling Clementine, organizer of the 2008 research and 2010 follow-up and this year’s TFT training; Billy Gatete, old friend and translator; and Jean de Due, former resident and now supervisor at the Rwandan Orphan Project.

We hit the ground running and by 8am the 9th, Diana, Bob and I were in a car headed to meet some of the new TFT trainees, trained by Celestin Mitabu. We entered the training room, located in Stella Bar, a local restraint/bar, and I was surprised to see many so many familiar faces.  Most of the new trainees, recently trained by Celestin, were former 2008 study participants from the AID’s group, the Widows’ group, and the older orphan groups.  What a pleasant surprise!  Their experience of TFT was such a positive one; they wanted to help others using this technique.

The stories were amazing!  One by one the trainers gathered at the Stella Bar, told their own personal stories.   In a separate room Robert Stone, our documentarian and his assistant Diana Gross got four moving stories on film.  In the larger room, others wanted to share their amazing stories of recovery with the help of TFT.

Each one started with something like: “I thought this was crazy. How could tapping help MY problems?”  But they did follow the instructions of their Rwandan therapists in 2008, and they did tap.  One by one, as they told their stories of trauma and recovery, I heard things like: “I’ve had a sad life.” “The first time in my life that I felt happy was after I joined the Widows group and then we did TFT.” “Now I have a life, a business.”  “Now I have hope, where before I had no hope and thought I would just die and my children would be orphans.” We were all inspired and encouraged by these stories of recovery. Read more

Left to right: Prosper ISHIMWE, Celestin MITABU, Roger Callahan, Deacon Augustin NZABONIMANA, Fr. Jean Marie VIANEY

by Joanne Callahan, MBA, President, ATFT Foundation

During the month of September 2011, four of our top Rwandan practitioners, and leaders of our ATFT Foundation’s sister charitable organization, IZERE Center, and director of the Rwandan Orphans Project, attended training to become trainers and further spread TFT in Africa. This ATFT Foundation project took place with the help of the St. Stephens Catholic Diocese, five Hawaiian agencies, and the hard work and dedication of many Hawaiians.

ATFT Foundation’s on-going Rwandan team, Suzanne Connolly, Caroline Sakai, and Gary Quinn supported their training and needs while in Hawaii. Suzanne was team leader on the deployments to Rwanda and support for the planning and facilitation of this year’s project. Caroline was team leader for this project in Hawaii. Her organization of everything was masterful. Gary provided much love, care, transportation and fun for our guests.

Roger and I had the wonderful opportunity to observe the Rwandans at work with the TFT trained staff of the Hale Na’au Pono, Waianae Coast Mental Health Services. We were impressed with their skill and level of supervision as well as the skill, professionalism and care of the staff at Hale Na’au Pono.

Roger at Hale Na’au Pono. Left to Right: Carole, Ho’oipo DeCambra, Roger Callahan, Jacquirie, Po’ka, with a beautiful quilt made by the Rwandan Orphans as a back drop.

During our time in Hawaii, we were deeply touched by the stories shared with us from the Hawaiian volunteers and the discussions with the four Rwandans. Fr. Jean Marie VIANEY, Deacon Augustin NZABONIMANA, and Prosper ISHIMWE were originally trained at the IZERE Center in 2009/2010. Fr. JMV and Deacon Augustin are directors of the center and have helped over 3000 people since learning TFT.

Celestin MITABU is the Director of the Rwandan Orphan Project, which was our first mission to Rwanda, with Paul Oas to help the Kigali street children. It was here that Suzanne Connolly and Dottie Webster started the Rwandan Quilting Project as a means of income for the orphans. The study, done in 2006-2007 was published last year.

It is so rewarding to see how these hard working and dedicated young men have shared TFT with thousands of traumatized people in both Kigali and Byumba. We are so inspired to hear their hopes and dreams of healing their country and people. The ATFT Foundation is dedicated to a long collaboration with them, helping many.

We thank all the people who have donated funds, time and services to allow the training of our Rwandan TFT practitioners. They have become highly skilled trainers, sharing the healing power of TFT with those in need in Hawaii, and those traumatized in their own county and neighboring African nations.

I am happy to announce the first of our team of Rwandans from the IZERE Center in Rwanda are arriving in Honolulu tonight.  The others will arrive later this week.

We are so very excited about this project as not only will four Rwandan TFT practitioners become trainers, spreading TFT far and wide in Africa, but many underprivileged in Hawaii as well as the clinics that serve them will benefit from TFT training and treatment during the month of September.

Using TFT to relieve the effects of trauma can open people to peace, compassion and community. It is the intention of the ATFT Foundation–to make trauma relief available on a global scale! You can learn more about the Foundation’s work by clicking here,

We would like to ask for your help to cover some of the expenses in this far reaching project. As the air tickets were more costly than expected, and we have over run our budget.

We are seeking donations toward their food and incidentals while in Hawaii. If anyone can assist us with this, we can accept donations of any size. If you would even assist with one meal, it would make a huge difference for our guests from Rwanda. Donation form is found here.

Thank you all for your help with this sharing of TFT with those who need it. Please visit the The Izere Center (Hope Center) Byumba, Rwanda website for more information.