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Trauma Treatment in the Middle East

Written by Jeff Wright
June 28, 2012

Thanks, Week of Compassion & Global Ministries!

Over the past seven years, Global Ministries and Week of Compassion have combined their resources to train over 250 Middle East mental health therapists in the use of EMDR, resulting in the treatment of thousands of children and adults suffering PTSD.  There is a long waiting list of therapists throughout the Middle East who now seek the training.  

At the request of the East Jerusalem YMCA Rehabilitation Program (EJ YMCARP), a Global Ministries mission partner, training began in 2005.  Janet Wright, a member of Heart of the Rockies Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Fort Collins, Colorado, gathered an international team of colleagues to do the trainings.  That team has now achieved its goal to create an all-Arab training team at the Y. 

Mona Zagrout, the Y’s senior trainer, has now provided trainings in Arabic to clinicians in Lebanon and Kenya.  In Jordan, she trained Iraqi therapists who travelled there to receive the training.  Over the past three months, Zagrout has visited Libya twice to assess the mental health capacity to provide trainings there.

Eye Movement, Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a particularly effective mental health therapy that treats the effects of ongoing trauma, such as that created through Israel’s occupation of Palestine.  EMDR (see www.emdr.org) is approved for use by many international organizations, including the American Psychological Association, the American Psychiatric Association and the Department of Defense for the treatment of PTSD.

[Pictured above: The first East Jerusalem YMCA EMDR training team.]



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