Counsellor, trainer, author and public speaker
Yvonne Retief has been working with individuals and groups for more than 35 years. She has a private practice in Pretoria, South Africa, where she specialises in trauma counselling and debriefing, relationship counselling and working with adult survivors of childhood abuse. Aside from her private practice, she also presents workshops to professionals as well as lay people interested in expanding their knowledge and skills.
She is regularly engaged as a public speaker and has addressed various national and international symposiums on topics related to her field of expertise. In Sept 2017, Yvonne spoke at a conference in the USA about the high crime rate in South Africa and the role that more than 800 trained TIR (Traumatic Incident Reduction) Facilitators are playing in addressing this problem in South Africa. In 2019 she spoke at a Hospi Vision Conference in Cape Town on the topic of Trauma and Spirituality. Yvonne also delivered a paper at the Mining Congress in Australia on trauma in mines.
Yvonne is affiliated to the Traumatic Incident Reduction Association (TIRA) in the USA and is qualified as a Traumatic Incident Reduction and Life Stress Reduction Facilitator and Trainer. She has taken 11 trainers through their internships to become certified TIR practitioners.
In 2017 she established the TIRA-SA (Traumatic Incident Reduction Association of South Africa) operating under the auspices of TIRA-USA. TIRA-SA's membership has grown to approximately 100 members in just a few years. TIRA-SA hosted two congresses in 2018 and 2019 - one on "Children and Trauma" and then other on "Bereavement". Another two congresses were held in 2020 - the first on "Bereavement" and the second on "Supporting the Grieving Child".
Yvonne is the author of two books. The first, “Joy Comes in The Morning”, deals with the method she developed for assisting adult survivors of childhood abuse. She has presented many workshops over the years teaching fellow professionals the technique described in the book. The second book, "Healing for Trauma”, deals with managing trauma in the South African context. The books have also been published in Afrikaans under the titles “Lag Weer oor die Dag wat Kom” and “Genesing vir Trauma”. She was also co-author of a book “A woman’s Legacy” (Afrikaans: “Vroue wat Inspireer”).