Report on the work by the Bulgarian Developing Group, BSAP “C.G.Jung”

During The first week of the war in Ukraine, we established a network of volunteering colleagues from all therapeutic schools who started working face-to-face with the Ukrainian refugees fleeing to Bulgaria or online with people who were still in Ukraine and needed psychological help. Meanwhile, apart from providing direct psychological help, we also started thinking of offering professional teaching and guidance for all the volunteering colleagues. Since none of our Jungian analysts in Bulgaria has expertise in working with war trauma and refugees, we invited a Bulgarian colleague with psychoanalytic orientation – Kalina Yordanova, Ph.D. who has been working in refugee camps and with torture survivors, to give a seminar on psychological first-aid and support in war conflicts.
This was the first seminar on working with refugees that the Bulgarian Developing Group hosted, which was open to the whole Bulgarian professional community. It marked the beginning of a subsequent collaboration between colleagues from all psychotherapeutic schools, which we decided to expand, and to organize further teachings as more and more refugees were coming to Bulgaria.
The second event, which BSAP organized again with the generous help of Kalina Yordanova, was a public lecture with Prof. Dr. Vamik Volkan, a psychoanalyst from the USA renowned for his tremendous experience in working on war trauma and political conflicts.
After those two events with the psychoanalytic accent, in cooperation with Dr. Monica Luci, we designed a Jungian event, with the further focus on the work with refugees and war traumas. The idea of the seminar was to elaborate on some specifics of the therapeutic work with refugees in a situation where the therapists are living under potential danger of war i. e., in the neighbouring countries of Ukraine. Dr. Luci, who has a tremendous expertise in working with refugees, survivors of torture, and people who suffered war-related traumas, conducted a seminar entitled “Mental States of War in the Consulting Room: Refugees and Therapists”, for colleagues with Jungian and other theoretical backgrounds in the neighbouring countries around Ukraine: Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Czech Republic, but colleagues from other countries like Armenia, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Italy, also attended. Ukrainian colleagues could attend for free. We ended up with an international seminar with around eighty people from all over the world who paid a fee, which was entirely donated to the Ukrainian Developing Group, on the generous suggestion of Dr. Monica Luci. The feedback we received was rewarding and encouraged us to continue such work.
Having ZOOM seminars turned out to be one good thing that came out of the life under pandemic. It allowed us to continue organizing our Jungian training with IAAP analysts from all over the world and have seminars once or twice per month, from the very start of the pandemic until now. That was (and still is) a great opportunity to stay together and interconnected in our Jungian community, both during the challenging years of the pandemic and now during the war in Ukraine.
After those three successful events in support of Ukraine and our Ukrainian colleagues, we decided to open online seminars of our training program to the Jungian community in Eastern and Central Europe, as well as to Jungian routers and colleagues from other parts of the world. For our colleagues from Ukraine, we offer our seminars for free. Last weekend, we had the first such open seminar on “Perversion and perverse relationships from a Jungian perspective” with our Liaison Person, Angelica Loewe (Austria) and Antonio de Rienzo (Italy). People from various parts of the world, India, Greece, Slovenia, Ukraine, Hungary, attended the seminar.
We hope that future will offer us further opportunities to establish a more interconnected international Jungian community, in which we can learn together and share our analytical experiences.
Teodora Taneva,
Board Member of Bulgarian Society of Analytical Psychology “C.G.Jung”

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