Psychological well-being is one of the main components of health. Protecting and improving the spiritual health of the people in regions where disaster, crisis etc. events are experienced are within the interventions with high priority.
Nonetheless, it has been observed around the world that there is an increase in psychological problems in 2019 in the regions facing with humanitarian crises. Especially, the people living in Bangladesh, Iraq, Jordan, Nigeria, Southern Sudan, Syria, Ukraine and Palestine need psychological support.
Yeryüzü Doktorları carried out their first activities in this area by organizing psychosocial support activities for the local people after the 2011 Van Earthquake and the Soma Disaster in 2014. In the later period, work on psychosocial support continued and many projects have been developed after identifying their current local psychological health system.
In addition, regular psychological support services are provided in the clinics where basic health services are provided.
You can contribute to our psychological support projects with your donations.
The programs that we continue to actively carry out our psychosocial support activities are as follows:
Yeryüzü Doktorları is the only institution among the international institutions providing healthcare services in Gaza. The local community have been provided psychological support in order for them to get over their traumas resulting from the conflict and humanitarian crisis in Gaza. Within this scope, Yeryüzü Doktorları conducts informative and supportive activities towards the local people and focus groups.
Our activities have still been continuing since 2016 in Gaza, and 4 thousand 459 sessions have been delivered to people until May 2019.
You can visit our “Gaza Crisis” page to find out the details on our psychological support activities carried out by mobile medical teams. To visit the page, click here.
With the aim of providing integration between Syrian health workers and Turkish Healthcare System, Refugee Health Training Centers Project has been launched in January 2017 within the stakeholderships of Ministry of Health and World Health Organization. Within the scope of this project, individual psychosocial support for 1 thousand 370 beneficiaries and psychosocial group sessions have been provided for 69 beneficiaries.
You can click here go our “Syrian Crisis” page to learn more about our ongoing Refugee Health Training Centers Project.
European Union Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection Operations Unit (ECHO) and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) funded by Turkey Local Initiatives Fund (LIFT) under the project; It has been displaced refugees living in Turkey / psychosocial support for the maintenance of health services and counseling for refugees in order Kilis in Istanbul and was established two community center. In these centers, services such as improving access to health services, appointment to health institutions, follow-up and guidance, psychological support, case management support are provided. Studies continue in two centers.
In the studies that started in February 2020, 2 thousand 590 sessions of health-based awareness raising service, 13 sessions of health support / guidance service, thousand 578 sessions of case management service, 27 sessions of individual psychotherapy, 950 sessions of psychological support, 1,705 sessions of protection-based services until September. A total of 8 thousand 306 sessions of service were provided, including awareness raising service, 403 sessions of Covid19-based awareness raising service and 331 sessions of child-friendly space activity.
Yeryüzü Doktorları, who set out to heal the wounds of the people of the region after the earthquake that took place on January 24, 2020 and whose epicenter was Elazig-Sivrice, reached the region at the same night and started needs analysis and psychological first aid studies.
In addition to activities such as individual counseling, group awareness raising training, child-friendly field activities, she provided translation support; It also distributed hygiene kit, baby food and various needs.
Community Centers in Hatay and Şanlıurfa have been established in order to give psychological support towards Syrian refugees forced to migrate and local communities, provide healthcare services and strengthen social communication within the society. Primarily psychosocial support, case management, psychopathologic awareness activities, Yeryüzü Doktorları continues its works in both centers with many programs, such as interventions at home with home healthcare services, social adaptation activities by individual psychological support, safe children zone and awareness raising activities.
In our services having started in April 2019; 409health supporting sessions,2,952 psychoeducation and group therapy sessions, 270 case management sessions, 3,112 awareness raising sessions, 4,693 home visits, 1,440safe children zone activities have been provided so far.
Primary healthcare services and psychological support were provided for refugees by mobile medical teams in the province of Sultangazi which was opened in March 2016 and in the province of Konak in İzmir opened in February 2016.
In 2016 and 2017, 15 thousand 946 psychological support sessions were delivered in Sultangazi and İzmir Basmane clinics.
Primary healthcare services and psychological support in compliance with Ministry of Health and World Health Organization were provided for the refugees fled from Iraq and Syria to Diyarbakır, Batman, Sırnak. These services were ensured in refugee centers constructed by municipalities, and the services in this scope lasted from December 2014 to December 2016.
In the cities of Şırnak, Batman and Diyarbakır, 13 thousand 647 psychological support sessions were delivered in total between the years of 2014 – 2016.
School Based Support Program for Refugee Children (MODP) was started in November 2015 to be applied and developed by taking into consideration the psychological support needs of the children in Ilaf School which is one of the schools where Syrian kids receive education in Istanbul. Under this project, initially, psychological screening was performed to students, and after the screening results were evaluated by volunteer psychologists, these students were divided into groups depending on whether they needed a psychological support or not. MODP training containing 8-week sessions created on grounds of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) approach was given to teachers who were at the same school and volunteer for the study. The training included various titles such as spiritual traumas and ways of coping with them, communication skills, and it lasted 4 full days.
Following the permissions taken from parents, the trained teachers applied MODP module to students aged between 9-14 years, who were selected as a result of the psychological screenings, as groups of 10, in company with weekly supervisions during 8 weeks. Application of the MODP module by the teachers to the students reduced potential relation problems that may stem from language problems and cultural differences as well as it enabled teachers to gain the skill of applying this module in company with supervision. Furthermore, it was aimed that the Syrian teachers and students would develop mechanisms for coping with the traumas they experienced and that these mechanisms would be permanent in the long term.
After the project was completed in Ilaf School, the same project was conducted in Al-Nukhba School, which was another school that Syrian students received education, between the dates of January 2016-July 2016.
In cooperation with The Humanitarian Activities Unit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and Kilis Provincial Directorate of National Education, between the dates of 9-10-11 January 2016, training on child/adolescent psychology and classroom management were given to nearly 450 teachers, who was teaching to children between 4-17 years-old in 18 Syrian schools in Kilis. By these trainings, it was succeeded that the teachers could communicate well with their students, have a knowledge about their emotional and social state, be aware of the children having problems and lead them to related units.
In May 2015, under this project, which was developed with the intent of improving fraternity emotions between Turkish and Syrian kids and contributing to social swarming, one class from a school where Syrian children receive education and one class from a school where Turkish children receive education were specified and the children in the determined classes were brought together with specific periods in order to carry out various activities. At these gatherings, various drama games and activities selected in a manner that language differences wouldn’t cause a problem and pictures were drawn within the scope of the workshops. Yeryüzü Doktorları volunteers had undergone the psychoeducation necessary within the project coordinated all of these games and workshops.
At the end of the project, the pictures which were products of the workshops, were exhibited in Taksim Subway Station on 25-30 May and were visited by thousands of people. Moreover, the students who participated in this project were also taken to this exhibition and had the chance to see their own works.
As a result of the project, it was ensured that the children could convey their feelings to their works by gathering around the same art work, express themselves much better and discover their talents. Furthermore, it was contributed to the increasing of unity and solidarity emotions thanks to swarming games and the various works made together by Turkish and Syrian students.
For Yeryüzü Doktorları personnel and volunteers performing field works by going to disaster and crisis regions; share groups were organized in April 2015, via which they could share their field experiences, learn psychological disorders such as trauma, secondary trauma, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety disorder and ways of protecting from these disorders and they would get psychoeducation including topics such as psychological endurance, post traumatic growth.
As a result of the study, participants were informed about psychological disorders, symptoms of these and ways of protecting from them, support was given to increase of their psychological endurance and disorders such as secondary trauma were tried to be prevented.
To provide necessary team to deliver basic and psychological first aid during a probable disaster, 60 people from Yeryüzü Doktorları personnel and volunteers were trained on basic and psychological first aid, between the dates of October-November 2015.
With these training, it was aimed for the trained people to communicate healthier and stronger with the ones affected and develop some strategies to handle with stress, secondary trauma and other psychological problems.
As of 2015, seminars and training programs for mental health area workers and students have been carried out in order to increase the number of people who can work with trauma cases and ensure that they are well equipped, to improve their ability to recognize psychological problems and to initiate the intervention techniques to these health issues.
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