25 years of Positive Deviance at the PD Global Conference
"past, present and future"
October 31st to November 3rd 2016
Mozhdeh Ghasemiyani is an experienced psychologist with specialist expertise in trauma, refugee and crises who has worked in both government, local government and NGO’s in Denmark, the UK and the US to improve the treatment of vulnerable refugees, especially children. Mozhdeh’s tireless work for refugees have been both on the political level aiming at educating the media and population at large, and on the human level seeking to alleviate the suffering of individual refugees.
Mozhdeh was born in Iran on the day of the Iranian revolution and given a name meaning “good news” as her Kurdish parents hoped that the change of government would bring better times for the Kurdish people. Little did they know that only a few years later Mozhdeh and her family had to flee from persecution into northern Iraq where they lived as refugees for more than ten years until they came to Denmark in 1995 under the UNHCR’s quota system. Mozhdeh has made it her mission in life to help those less fortunate, that either could not flee from persecution or that suffer severely from their trauma.
Mozhdeh has a Master’s degree in psychology from the University of Aarhus and has furthermore achieved post-Master’s degrees from the University of Oxford, George Washington University and Johns Hopkins University.
Mozhdeh has extensive experience working with refugees for both government and NGO’s. In the Danish Government’s Ministry for Integration Mozhdeh worked with the integration of adolescents and young adults and in local government Mozhdeh has been responsible for the treatment of unaccompanied minors. Mozhdeh has also been a crisis psychologist for the Danish defense, treating Danish soldiers returning from conflict in Afghanistan.
Mozhdeh is currently a crisis psychologist for Doctors without Borders and works on a project for Danish Red Cross about volunteers’ work with traumatised refugees, a topic on which she has written the Red Cross’ handbook. Mozhdeh has also managed a project for the NGO Freedom from Torture in London, where she developed best-practices for work with unaccompanied minors who have survived torture.
Mozhdeh is also an active advocate for human rights and the rights of refugees. This activism brought Mozhdeh to serve as a Humanity in Action fellow in the United States House of Representatives where she worked for the Human Rights Caucus. She regularly appears in the Danish media and teaches a number of Danish municipalities on how to improve their work with refugees. Mozhdeh is Founder and Chair of the Danish Psychologists’ Network on Unaccompanied Children and Adolescents.
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