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Ala'a's story

Breaking the silence on the mental health impact of war

Ongoing conflict with Israel

Repeated wars|Skills shortage|Mental health impact

The 25-mile long, 6-mile wide Gaza Strip forms part of Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories and is home to more than 1.5 million Palestinians. Armed conflict has broken out between Palestinian militants and Israel three times in recent years, in 2008, 2012 and most recently in 2014.

International Medical Corps began working in Gaza in 2008, after Israel launched a military offensive that displaced thousands of civilians and we still continue to provide life saving health care to the people of Gaza. Our response to each crisis has remained the same, providing emergency health care to those injured in the fighting, whilst also training mental health practitioners capable of delivering mental health services in the community.

The health and psychological consequences of this violence has been profound, particularly on the children of Gaza.

Mental health: World Health Organization statistics indicate that mental health disorders can increase by as much as 10% in areas of armed conflict. Since 2008, International Medical Corps have worked to increase the mental health services available to the most vulnerable in Gaza. Activities included, screening and treating patients with a range of mental health disorders

Training: We also train local health care workers to identify, manage and refer common mental health disorders such as mood swings and anxiety, as well as more severe afflictions such as schizophrenia. We also train health workers in how to take care of their own mental health whilst working in such difficult and often dangerous conditions.

Explore Gaza

Our impact and work

gaza tile Ibraheem Abu Mustafa Reuters

Gaza-Israel conflict

Gaza-Israel conflict

A family in recovery

The 50-day war in Gaza during 2014 destroyed 20,000 homes and forever changed the lives of many. Those who lived near the border with Israel were evacuated to shelters and International Medical Corps provided support.

breaking the silence gaza tile copyright Ibraheem Abu Mustafa / Reuters

Breaking the silence

Breaking the silence

Mental health in Gaza

"It was when the war was over that I felt something was wrong with me, but I didn’t know what. I no longer wanted to see or deal with my children." Read Ala’a’s story

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