Eligibility & Selection Criteria
Clinicians and healing practitioners who treat torture survivors are eligible for the Barbara Chester Award — from the fields of psychology, social work, physical therapy, counseling, psychiatry, western medicine, and indigenous healing traditions.
For purposes of the Award, "torture" shall be defined as the deliberate, systematic or wanton infliction of physical or mental suffering by one or more persons acting in official capacities, such as in government, or occurring as a result of organized violence.
The Barbara Chester Award recipient will be determined by vote of the Selection Committee. Selection Committee members have demonstrated substantial lifetime commitment to the field of human rights, and many have worked specifically with survivors of political torture.
Mandatory (Basic) Requirements
Candidates must be clinicians or healing practitioners who provide treatment or healing services directly to survivors of political torture and their communities.
Candidates must work primarily with torture survivors, although they might in addition provide services to other clients, such as refugees who have suffered dislocation and subsequent trauma.
Candidates should exemplify some (not necessarily all) of the following qualities, abilities, and accomplishments undertaken and performed in a respectful and nonviolent manner.
Conceptual and Intellectual Brilliance
Tenacity and Perseverance
Respect for cultural diversity
Facilitation of community organization and teamwork
Strong, effective client advocacy
Promotion of self-determination for indigenous people
Superb therapeutic/healing skills.
Consideration will also be given to candidates whose personal safety may be in jeopardy from working in high-risk situations.