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PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES/2018/“Living like this is something you breathe”


MSF mental health awareness day at Qalqilya Zoo, West Bank

On Tuesday 7th August 2018 the MSF mental health team working in cities of Nablus and Qalqilya in the West Bank, Palestine, held an awareness day at a local zoo for women and children, with the support of volunteers from the “Association of Family of Injured and Martyred”, an organisation that works with families where a member of that family has been injured or killed due to the many years of occupation and violence. Parents, guardians and young people of all ages came to play, chat and have open conversations about mental health – a subject that is heavily stigmatised.
The zoo is in Qalqilya, a Palestinian city in the west north of the West Bank. The Israeli division wall hems the city in on three sides. Each week an MSF team comes to Qalqilya to hold mental health sessions made up of psychologists, a medical doctor and a social worker. The teams provide services to adults, teenagers, children, parents and families. In 2017, 44% of the patients who received psychological care from MSF’s teams were minors.
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