About Australian Jewish Psychologists
Australian Jewish Psychologists (AJP) was formed in response to the Maccabi Bridge disaster in 1997. The consequential trauma was experienced not only by the many Australian adults and children in Israel, but also by family and friends at home.
Questions followed as to the availability of psychological treatment of
community trauma in the event of a local emergency/disaster such as a fire at a Jewish Aged Care facility or a terrorist attack on a community building.
Although it is well recognised that there are many qualified and skilled psychologists trained and experienced in trauma, questions arose as to their suitability to treat Jewish victims who may have underlying psychopathologies, remnants from the Holocaust.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, the most commonly reported corollary of the Holocaust, for many is still presenting with symptoms decades later (Kuch & Cox, 1992). Furthermore, of concern, was whether any of these psychologists could speak Yiddish, Polish, Hebrew etc if necessary.
AJP was launched on February 25, 2001 by a very enthusiastic committee. The underlying raison d’etre for AJP is to “give back” to the community in the form of psychological services in the event of a community emergency/disaster.
AJP members are required to provide emergency response as volunteers. In addition, AJP provides ongoing training in trauma management (response and recovery) to all its members free of charge, to ensure their knowledge and skill base are current. Much of the training is conducted by Dr Rob Gordon, a Clinical psychologist with many years experience in advising governments and the Red Cross on how they can help people affected by an emergency.
AJP also acts as a resource to Jewish organisations such as Jewish Care, JCCV, JEMP as well as the wider community including local government.
AJP Mission Statement
The AJP Inc. is a group of Australian Jewish Psychologists established to make a professional contribution to the Jewish Community and to provide a forum for discussion of issues relevant to Jewish psychologists.
AJP aims to provide:
An opportunity for members to network with other Jewish psychologists for personal and professional advancement and to share interests.