Dr. Sana Hamzeh, Clinical Advisor of the Restart Center for Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence and Torture in Lebanon, will receive the 8th Barbara Chester Award for her innovative multimodal and client-centered approaches to rebuilding and protecting the lives of survivors of torture.
Since founding the Restart Center in 1996, Dr. Hamzeh has touched the lives of approximately 20,000 survivors in collaboration with the multidisciplinary team she leads, empowering survivors of torture, refugees, individuals with PTSD, Anxiety and Depression and other vulnerable populations. In addition to her Restart Center accomplishments, she is also vice president of the International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims, a drafter, trainer and implementer of the Istanbul Protocol, a mental health expert in Physicians for Human Rights, a member of Act. NOW’s trauma surviving group, and a founding Member of the Eastern Mediterranean Association of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Allied Professions. In nominating her for the award, Restart Center Chief Executive Director Suzanne Jabbour recalled a conversation which illustrates her colleague’s extraordinary courage.“Being concerned about her safety, I remember once asking her, ‘Do you really have to travel to Iraq? Are you sure you should go? Her response was simple: ‘Why go to safe places only if there are people from dangerous places that need help? ’”When asked what her future holds, Dr. Hamzeh replied, “What I would say is that I am now giving birth of a new generation...a pool of youth who will continue what I have started and what I am still doing. I will always and always be a fighter forever.”