Ulf Lidman is a trained therapist with more than 35 years of experience in the field. He has a Master’s degree in intercultural studies and a Master’s degree in family therapy and counseling. He provides training for people who work with refugees, the homeless and the formerly incarcerated.
“ My job is to equip you to help other people help themselves ”
Ulf works extensively with training refugee workers in Cross-Cultural Counseling and Motivational Interviewing. He has spent ten years working with unaccompanied refugee children and minors and training staff in this area. Ulf has extensive experience working in Europe, the Middle East, and central and southern Africa.
Helping people in crisis has been the driving force in Ulf’s career. If there is a Romanian beggar or a Moroccan street kid, these are the people I work with. I strongly believe in people’s abilities to find what they need inside themselves.
“ Western techniques and methodologies often don’t work in collectivist, community-based cultures ”
Instead I used Cross-Cultural Counseling to take a community-based approach. This field challenges Western methods and can be more effective with relational cultures. Through this approach I train social workers, medical professionals, and mental health professionals to help others with integration and improving their quality of life.
Ulf has also worked with the rehabilitation and restoration of formerly incarcerated gang members in Europe. Through Motivational Interviewing, Ulf helped these individuals prepare for a new life outside of prison. “After one year of counseling, they were able to turn their lives around and become productive citizens,” Ulf says. “I believe that people are the experts of their own lives, and my job is to help them figure out their own solutions.”
In Sweden, where Ulf is originally from, he provided crisis intervention for homeless people with mental illnesses and supported people marginalized by physical illnesses. Throughout his career, Ulf has helped people affected by HIV and AIDS, including children and adults in South African townships, families in Los Angeles, and people in the prison system in Europe.
Ulf started his career working as a volunteer for relief and development organizations in the Middle East and Africa. This included seven years of work in Lebanon, Egypt, and central Africa. Today he continues to work with international organizations, as well as government agencies and departments in southern Africa and the Middle East, and non-profit organizations and charities.