A small break from the war

The Documentation and Accountability Hub of the Norwegian Helsinki Committee (DAH) has been collecting and analysing evidence of human rights violations and war crimes in Ukraine since Russia invaded the country in 2014.

With the escalation of the war in February 2022, our work has increased manifold. Documenters who work in the field, visit sites, and conduct interviews with victims and witnesses of war crimes, experience great emotional strain. 

To alleviate this, the NHC organised a “Small break from the war” in Oslo in late-December 2023 for colleagues to have some days of free time in a safe space far away from the frontline. The break included sightseeing on the Oslo Fjord, sauna and icebathing, as well as a two-day seminar with Ukrainian psychologists – on how to cope with emotional trauma and stress. 

After the break, one of the documenters said:I couldn’t even imagine that I would be able to relax and take a deep breath! But you managed to wrap me in warmth so tightly that I was able to relax, trust and fill myself.

The break is a part of NHC’s strategy to prioritize the mental and emotional health of our friends and partners on the front lines in the battle against impunity and struggle to achieve accountability. 

Read more about the work of DAH here.

Contact us


Lene Wetteland

Head of Documentation and Accountability HubEmail: [email protected]Phone: +47 97 69 75 53Twitter: @lenewett
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Arve Hansen

AdviserEmail: [email protected]
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