Gaza Pediatric Mental Health Initiative

Gaza Pediatric Mental Health Initiative

This Gaza-only initiative was organized as an early response to the war in 2014, when tens of thousands of Gaza children were psychologically traumatized from direct exposure to violence. In 2018 our focus moved to train local Community-Based Organizations (CBOs) to help them better respond to this crisis facing children in Gaza.

About Our Gaza Pediatric Mental Health Initiative

In 2014, the entire population of Gaza, which is 50% children, was subjected to 55 days or bombardment from land, sea and air, resulting in thousands of dead and injured civilians. The PCRF initiated a field study in which we found thousands of children suffering from high forms of stress and anxiety as a result of witnessing the violence firsthand. Working with partners from the Gaza Community Mental Health Program (GCMHP) and the Center for Mind-Body Medicine (CMBM), we began different approaches to intervening with the children and their families. This included group therapy, one-on-one therapy, medication support, summer camps and other activities to assist in their treatment. In 2015, we were supported by Islamic Relief in the USA for this project, and in 2017, Cycling4Gaza raised funds to support our ongoing efforts to alleviate the hardship and suffering of children who are enduring psychological trauma in Gaza.

Gaza Pediatric Mental Health Program

Following the bombings of Gaza in 2014, PCRF established a pediatric mental health program to support traumatized children. Since then, we have expanded the program to include the victims of violence and those with diseases like cancer. This program has been helping thousands of children and families in Gaza to better manage the anxiety, stress, and challenges of life under siege and occupation.

Meet Our Team

Following the 2014 fifty-five day bombing of Gaza, PCRF initiated a campaign to determine the extent of the impact of the violence on the mental health of children there. Working with our volunteer mental health specialists from Stanford University, we were able to determine the following:

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