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QRCS, WHO provide psychosocial support services in Syria
In partnership with World Health Organization (WHO), Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS) is working on a project to deploy mobile psychological clinics in northern Syria. It is part of the efforts to respond to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in relation to mental health and psychosocial support in the northwestern parts of the country. The purpose of the project is to provide integrated, immediate, and culturally high-quality mental health and psychosocial support services for the internally displaced people (IDPs) who live in remote areas where such services are not available. To that end, mobile clinics are deployed, including physicians trained under WHO’s Mental Health Gap Action Programme (mhGAP), to provide individual mental health consultations. It covers 15 districts in northwestern Syria whose population do not have access to mental health centers. During weekdays, three mobile psychological clinics make regular visits to those suffering psychological issues or disorders, provide psychiatric drugs free-of-charge for the cases that require therapeutic interventions, and conduct awareness raising activities such as community mental health education on how to deal with trauma and difficulties of life. Also, the project involves holding remote psychological support sessions to alleviate the impact of war and COVID-19 on children. Activity bags are distributed to the parents and care providers, containing materials to be used in psychological support and at-home training for children. Implemented by QRCS’s representation mission in Turkey, the 5-month project will benefit some 6,840 IDPs and residents of 15 underserved districts.