Andrea B. Goldberg, LCSW

EMDR Psychotherapist  & Consultant in NJ


Trauma Recovery/EMDR Humanitarian Assistance Programs (TR/HAP) was founded in the aftermath of the Oklahoma City bombing in the United States in 1995. The Mission of TR/HAP is to build capacity for effective treatment of traumatic stress disorders to relieve human suffering that results from man made and natural disasters throughout the world.


TR/HAP is a global volunteer network of mental health professionals who travel anywhere there is a need to stop suffering and prevent the after-effects of trauma and violence.  The primary focus is on training and empowering local therapists in underserved communities and regions in crisis to treat trauma using EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), a form of therapy that has been proven effective for post-traumatic stress disorder in controlled studies. Teams of TR/HAP volunteers partner with local community agencies to offer low cost training to local mental health professionals in war-torn regions, disaster sites, and Third-World countries to help break the cycle of violence and human suffering.


In the United States, efforts include providing reduced fee training to therapists working in inner cities and treating survivors and witnesses of urban violence. As a TR/HAP volunteer, I have been involved in teaching EMDR therapy to clinicians in underserved urban communities in New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Connecticut.


EMDR is a powerful tool for battling the after-effects of trauma. Local therapists and organizations are helped to set up infrastructures to support ongoing direct service to their communities. In this way, the healing power of EMDR is increased exponentially, continuing long after HAP clinicians leave an area.


I am privileged to have the opportunity to add my small part to these efforts here in the U.S., while these amazingly generous volunteers travel the world to help people heal from the effects of natural disasters and wars.


For example, when the Indian Ocean tsunami hit in late December 2004, killing some 230,000 people in 14 countries, TR/HAP volunteers went to work quickly. Hundreds of clinicians were trained in Thailand, Sri Lanka, India and Indonesia to help survivors deal with the effects of the loss of loved ones and livelihoods.


Another effect of those devastating waves for many, especially children, was fear of the sea. EMDR clinician and child specialist Aiton Birnbaum developed "Making Waves," which focused on helping children, and later adults, overcome their fear of the water, step by careful step. *


Whenever and wherever a natural or manmade disaster occurs, TR/HAP volunteers help people deal with the after-effects of trauma and help communities nurture resiliency to protect against future trauma.  Throughout the world, TR/HAP volunteers find innovative solutions to extraordinarily complex problems.


Although TR/HAP therapists volunteer their time and skill, donations provide funds to get them to wherever help is needed. Donations pay for building a disaster relief fund that helps volunteer teams respond quickly when disasters strike. If you are interested in helping to assure that we can continue to provide help wherever it is needed, you can contribute to TR/HAP by following this link.









Trauma Recovery Networks

Trauma Recovery Networks  are local networks of EMDR clinicians who provide pro-bono services in the event of a local natural disaster or communal tragedy. The Northern New Jersey Trauma Recovery Network (NNJ-TRN) is part of the National Trauma Recovery Network of TR/HAP.

EMDR-inspired Song
for Trauma in Sderot

Shachar Bar, an art therapist and teacher in Sderot, Israel, created a song that incorporated EMDR-inspired bilateral alternating hand and foot movements to help children who were traumatized by the falling rockets to learn a way to deal with their fear. Before the song, when the alarm sounded the children were becoming hysterical and some were freezing, unable to seek cover.** Parents reported that their children were crying frequently, regressing, wetting the bed, and afraid of going to sleep by themselves.***


The children were taught to sing with accompanying motions (in Hebrew): “My heart is pounding, boom, ba-ba, boom, boom, boom. My body is shaking, doom, da-da, doom, doom, doom … Breathe deep, now we can laugh. It all passed and I’m glad it’s over — yes!” The song and bilateral movements helped the children to accept, express and release their fears. A teacher in the video said, “We beat those who wanted to defeat us. They didn’t succeed. On the contrary, it strengthened us. We move on with more strength.”