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Rabbis participates in Grief and Bereavement Counselling Seminar

Leaders and members of the Rabbinical Council of Victoria (RCV) have participated in an advanced professional development training course focussing on Grief and Bereavement Support, with Keren Ludski. Keren is a qualified and experienced professional educator, specialist grief and loss counsellor, counselling supervisor, VET assessor and trainer, facilitator and speaker and has vast experience in bereavement counselling and facilitating bereavement support groups. Keren facilitated training to the RCV in 2013 and was asked to come back and provide an advanced course after the success of the initial course.

Over twenty Rabbis and Rebbetzins attended the course arranged by Rabbi Ralph Genende in his Professional Development portfolio on the RCV Executive, which concentrated on complex areas of grief and bereavement counselling such as in the palliative care setting, carer loss, child and adolescent bereavement and suicide loss.

Keren noted that the course “covered a range of intense and heavy topics around bereavement and each topic invoked discussion and reflections from all participants. The discussions reflected the open-mindedness of the rabbis and their insightful awareness of the challenges that face the community in the area of grief and loss. We are truly blessed to have such a committed and passionate group of people leading our community. ”.

The course also featured a presentation by RCV Vice President, Rabbi Daniel Rabin, who has a Masters Degree in Counselling and Psychotherapy. Rabbi Rabin discussed the importance of 'Self-Care' for the Rabbi & Rebbetzin and presented research from his thesis on 'Vicarious Trauma and other risks in the role of Rabbi.' "Rabbis and Rebbetzin spend a lot of time helping others in many different ways and are often on call 24/7. Due to their empathic nature and always being willing to assist and put others first, they often forget about self-preservation. Most Rabbis undertake various training courses to assist them in their role but few courses focus on the impact that the constant support and counselling might have upon the Rabbi. I thought it was important to highlight the risks of empathic engagement and offer some strategies in self-care and how to mitigate any potential risks, which of course could be of great benefit to the Rabbi or Rebbetzin."

The RCV which has previously offered extended courses in counselling skills and marriage preparation, will later in the year provide its members with further programs to extend their skills, starting with a course in couple counselling and marriage enrichment.


For further information contact the Executive Director RCV,

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