Kicking the Ball and Taking Care – Psychosocial Help in the Gaza Strip and in the West Bank

Location: Gaza Strip and West Bank, Palestine
Duration: 2010 – 2012
Partners: UNRWA, UNRWA, Palestinian Counselling Center, Gaza Community Mental Health Program
Staff involved: Dr. David Becker, Elise Bittenbinder, Ilia Castellanos, Dr. Conrad Frey, Dr. Patrick Haemmerle, Kay Kirschner, Dr. Peter Platiel, Sibylle Rothkegel, Sabrina Schütte, Christina Wedell
Links: www.unrwa.org | www.pcc-jer.org/english/ | www.gcmhp.net/en/
Status: ongoing

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This project started in 2010 and will continue to the end of 2012. It is financed by the humanitarian help of the Federal Foreign Office of Germany. The objective of the project is twofold:
On one side we are trying to help develop extra-curricular football activities in UNRWA schools in the Gaza Strip and in the West Bank thus offering a space for a total of 800 boys and girls not only to do sports but to have easier access to help in reference to basic mental health needs. All participating children are organized in groups of 20 and when they meet they have time for football training and for talking and sharing and dealing with problems if the need arises.
On the other side the project trains a total of 36 mental health professionals in coaching and supervision. Each trainee in turn supervises a group of about 10 professionals, some of which are from the area of mental health, others from education or social work. This way a total of 360 professionals are participating in a process of coaching which helps them deal with problems at work and also offers them the necessary support to avoid burnout and secondary traumatization. One of the supervised groups are the football trainers.

The situation in Palestine is tense and shaped through a chronically threatening and traumatic environment. The project aims at helping local staff develop better structures of self-protection and also at facilitating children a minimal space of protection in the tough life they are unfortunately forced to lead.

As part of the project three sports pitches were built / enabled. Furthermore the necessary sports materials, uniforms, shoes etc. were bought. The 16 trainers (8 men, 8 women) were trained in Germany twice for a period of 4 weeks and also trained on the spot by German football trainers in repetitive occasions since the beginning of the project. At the same time an OPSI team of experts has carried out the supervision and coaching training and has also provided the mental health training for the football trainers.

Kicking the ball

Kicking the ball

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Kicking the ball

Kicking the ball

Kicking the ball

Kicking the ball

Kicking the ball

Kicking the ball

Kicking the ball

Kicking the ball

Kicking the ball and taking care

Kicking the ball and taking care

Kicking the ball and taking care

Kicking the ball and taking care

Kicking the ball and taking care

Kicking the ball and taking care

Kicking the ball and taking care

Kicking the ball and taking care

Kicking the ball and taking care

Kicking the ball and taking care

Kicking the ball and taking care

Kicking the ball and taking care

 

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On the Federal Foreign Office Site, click here …