Week 41: Mental Health Online Gathering

Week 41: Mental Health Online Gathering

Here are Yoad Hakeem’s slides from the presentation.

On October 12th we learned about the mental health impacts of the ongoing occupation of Palestine, in particular the blockade of Gaza. Our guest was Yoad Hakeem, a clinical psychologist with the Palestinian Counseling Center.

More about our guest:

Yoad Hakeem represents the Palestinian Counseling Center (PCC). The PCC was established in 1983 by a group of psychologists, educators and community activists to provide professional and quality mental health care to Palestinians in Jerusalem and the West Bank. Since its inception, and through its team of multi-disciplinary counselors and experts, the PCC has served as a catalyst in promoting community-based development and introducing the concept of mental health in Palestine. At the time of its founding, mental health services in the region were restricted to psychiatric treatment for mental disorders at mental health hospitals and private clinics operated by psychiatrists. Treatment methods used were largely archaic, limited to bio-medical approaches, including medication and electric shock therapy. To counter these potentially harmful tactics, work at the center began, on a voluntary basis, through awareness-raising efforts in schools on the importance of mental health counseling and working with children exposed to physical and political violence. Since then, the PCC has passed through a number of phases in its development process that have led to its present shape and character. 

You can find PCC on their website and follow them on Facebook and YouTube.

Activism Time

Kumi Action is at:

This week, help us inform mental health workers around the globe of the mental health crisis in Palestine. You can help by reaching out to your local mental health clinics and practitioners and doing the following:

  • Letting them know that organizations such as the USA Palestine Mental Health Network and the UK Palestine Mental Health Network exist and need their support.
  • Asking that they read and sign the Mental Health Workers’ Pledge for Palestine.
  • Telling them that USA-P MHN and the UK-P MHN send delegations of clinicians and human rights workers to Palestine to introduce them to their colleagues in the West Bank and East Jerusalem who are involved in the daily work of mental health practice and human rights advocacy.
  • Sharing a report with them on mental health in Palestine. You could print out a copy and/or send it to them digitally. We suggest:
    • “Health conditions in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and in the occupied Syrian Golan” from the WHO.
    • “A Decade of Distress: The harsh and unchanging reality for children living in the Gaza Strip” from Save the Children.

Share your messages to local mental health providers on social media, tagging them whenever possible. Include a link to this page of the Kumi Now website along with the hashtags #KumiNow and #Kumi41.

Organizations to let them know about:

Mental Health Workers Pledge for Palestine: https://usapalmhn.com/portfolio-item/mental-health-workers-pledge-for-palestine/

Reports we suggest:

Link people to this page of the Kumi Now site: https://kuminow.com/mentalhealth/

From the Presentation/Chat

Coming after the session.