The Society for Psychological Assistance (SPA) is a non-profit, non-governmental organization founded in 1993, primarily as an answer to the consequences of the war for welfare and mental health of the population. In its first years, SPA is focused on working with people in crisis in war and post-war period and offering comprehensive community-based psychosocial assistance. Over time, SPA expands its field of work and introduces innovative psychosocial services in the community and develops trainings for professionals.
Thus, Society for Psychological Assistance is active in two main areas of work:
- Providing psychosocial services to individuals, families, groups and communities
Since 2003, SPA operates the Modus, Child, Adolescent and Family Community Centre in downtown Zagreb serving about 400 clients per year. The services include individual and group psychological support, counselling and therapy, as well as community psychological crisis interventions.
- Training for professionals
SPA has pioneered several innovative services that became integrated into governmental services as a standard. These include but are not limited to: psychological crisis interventions after major incidents affecting community (since 1995), clinical supervision in the national social services (since 2003) and treatment of perpetrators of domestic violence (since 2005). Ongoing SPA capacity building services include training and consultancy provided to governmental services, local communities, NGOs and individual professionals in the helping disciplines. Based on own and international experiences, since its establishment SPA has developed a range of training courses that were completed by over 10.000 care-providers from a large number of communities.
Respond proactively, professionally and adequately to psychosocial problems and needs of individuals, families and communities in Croatia, South-eastern Europe and other countries.
To be recognized as the non-governmental organization whose work is based on the principles of excellence in the field of psychosocial support to individuals, groups and communities so they could fulfil their needs, develop potentials and achieve the quality of life.
- to improve the quality of life of individuals, groups and communities by strengthening their competencies and resources
- to stimulate a holistic mental and psychosocial development of children, youth and families
- to improve the quality of interpersonal and intergroup relations
- to initiate and enable changes of undesirable and harmful behaviour
- to allow members of the SPA to share and implement their professional ideas, apply their expert knowledge and improve their skills
Development of a network of psychosocial counselling for users at risk
From January 1, 2021, the Society for Psychological Assistance started implementing the project “Development of a network of psychosocial counselling for users at risk “. It is a three-year project supported with 149.999,40 € by Active Citizens Fund, funded by the EEA and Norway Grants. SPA, as the project holder, cooperates with partner organizations – Association Children First, Institute for Labor Market Development, City of Zagreb – City Office for Social Protection and Persons with Disabilities, Center for Social Welfare Zagreb and NewSchool from Norway – in implementation of the project. The goal of the project is to establish a network of psychosocial counselling for users at risk, in order to ensure the psychosocia support in accordance with the needs of citizens and advocate for the sustainability of psychosocial counselling in local communities.
Focus on MEN: Gender Based Violence Prevention Work with Male Refugees and Migrants
Focus on MEN: Gender Based Violence Prevention Work with Male Refugees and Migrants (FOMEN) is a two-year project that began in September 2019 and runs until December 2021. Its focus is on gender sensitivity and prevention of gender-based violence following intersectional approaches. Men with international family history (migrants and refugees) will be reached through participatory intervention and capacity building programs. A team of experts from six European partner organisations, including SPA, developed quality standards and tools for gender sensitive and violence-prevention program that is based on work with men with international family history (migrants and refugees).
Capacity Development for Psychosocial Support – Strengthening Colombian care professionals for providing psychosocial services
From 2018 to 2020, SPA implemented a two-year project “Capacity Development for Psychosocial Support – Strengthening Colombian care professionals for providing psychosocial services””, funded by the European Union Trust Fund for Colombia. In addition to SPA as the project holder, two partner organizations participated in the implementation: ArqPsychotrauma Expert Group from the Netherlands and the Colombian National Training Agency – SENA (Servicio Nacional de Aprendizaje). The aim of the project was to improve the quality and availability of psychosocial assistance for the conflict-affected population in 4 target Colombian regions: Cundinamarca, Atlántico, Antioquia and Valle del Cauca. The training program for experts included 5 three-day modules and one two-day monitoring and evaluation meeting (a total of 17 days of training). The program was conducted in the four largest Colombian cities (Medellin, Baranquilla, Bogota, Cali) for a total of 145 care professionals and providers of psychosocial services.
Increasing employability of helping professionals
From 2012 to 2014, the Society for Psychological Assistance implemented the project ” Increasing employability of helping professionals” (IPA 126.96.36.199.04.01.c02). The project was implemented in partnership with the Croatian Employment Service – Zagreb Regional Office, the City of Zagreb – City Office for Health and Veterans and the organization Prava Formula d.o.o. The aim of the project was to increase the employability of unemployed helping professionals. This has been achieved by increasing their professional competencies as well as personal skills through training on counselling and direct work with people, “soft skills” needed for finding employment, self-employment and training on coaching job-seekers. The project includesd 35 experts (psychologists, social workers, rehabilitators, social pedagogues, teachers of children with special needs) without work experience in the profession or unemployed for more than a year.
Society for Psychological Assistance
Kneza Mislava 11¹ (through the passage, building on the left)
Phone: +385 1 4826 111, +385 1 4826 112
IBAN: HR7524020061100071507 (Erste & Steiermarkische Bank d.d.)
SWIFT/BIC code: ESBCHR22