Over the past months the Federation Global Initiative on Psychiatry has been active in Ukraine supporting the Maidan Medical Services.
The support now focuses on developing psychotrauma care in collaboration with the Maidan psychological Service and the Ukrainian Psychiatric Association.
The first two training weeks have taken place (in March and April) and at least another four are planned for the coming months.
The ongoing fundraising-campaign is aimed to support the funding of those further four training sessions with Georgian trauma counselors, reaching around 480 medical professionals. The Georgian team doesn't accept payment of fee; all costs are directly related to the seminar logistics. We call upon you to help us in realizing these plans and doing what must be done. All donations, big and small, are most welcome.
At the same time, all the above-mentioned entities are working in the following directions:
1. Knowledge Center on psychotraumatological assistance
On basis of the Maidan Psychological Service a new Association has recently been set up that unites professionals who are engaged in providing specialized assistance to those who have been traumatized by the events in Ukraine. Currently, the association consists mainly of members of the Maidan psychological Service, but it should expand its network also to other (mental) health and social services and other parts of the country. The association could function, in collaboration with other medical bodies in Ukraine, as a framework within which training is provided, manuals and other literature is published and disseminated, and knowledge is gathered both with regard to psycho-traumatology and with regard to the effects of the revolutionary events in Ukraine (e.g. epidemiological research or the oral history archive which is currently under development). The Association will be supported by FGIP and the UPA and will, together with the UPA, develop the knowledge center that provides professional backup to those working in this field in Ukraine.
2. Pilot psychotraumatological service
On basis of the Maidan psychological Service a pilot should be set up providing specialized help to traumatized persons on a multi-disciplinary basis. This pilot will receive training from Georgian colleagues and partners of the Federation Global Initiative on Psychiatry, as well as initial support in organizational management, fundraising and teambuilding. However, it is pivotal that this service becomes independent and self-sustaining as early as possible. To that end, it would be important that the Ministry of Health of Ukraine develops a system of purchasing services from service-providers. The result will be a natural competition between service providers, but good criteria should make sure that services are purchased on basis of quality and not of relations and other factors.
3. Support to regular mental health care services
Part of the persons traumatized by the revolutionary events, in particular those who were attracted by Maidan because – or in spite of – mental health care problems, will turn to regular mental health care services for assistance. In particular now, when the population at Maidan is changing and an increasing percentage of those there are either people who have an unusual lifestyle, or are homeless, or have a mental health background, the call to regular mental health care services will increase. It is of importance that they are equipped with adequate understanding of the problems and needs, and are able to respond in an effective manner. To this end trainings and consultations will be carried out.
Robert van Voren
April 15, 2014
More information about the Support Maidan Medical Support Fund project
Who is it for?
While the work of the medical teams can now gradually be taken over by regular medical services, the main challenge is now to take care of those traumatized by the events. These include activists who fought at the front line and who saw their buddies being wounded or killed; these include the relatives of those killed; these also include the volunteers of the Maidan hospital, who saw the wounded and killed being brought in by the dozen, and who had to perform operations in hotel lobbies and churches and treat the wounded right at the battle zone.
What is needed?
Through this campaign, we want to support the Global Initiative on Psychiatry (GIP) and their long-standing partner the Ukrainian Psychiatric Association (UPA) to help those dealing with trauma and grief by providing specialized trauma care. This support will be offered by experts from the region (Georgia) who know the circumstances and environment, and who speak the language of those affected. GIP and UPA work closely with centers and individual specialists in the region, who have a long‐lasting experience in similar situations. They will train Ukrainian personnel, who can follow up and develop their own expertise. And they want to support the medical personnel in putting their lives back on track, and make sure they will manage to give the traumatic events a place in their lives. “GIP has a 25-year experience in developing mental health care in Ukraine, working closely with Ukrainian partners and friends who know exactly what is needed and how it can be done”.
What can I do?
Make training sessions for medical professionals with trauma counselor experts with your donation possible. What can you do? We call upon you to help us in realizing these plans and doing what must be done. All donations, big and small, are most welcome. With your donation of 16 Euro you support one person to take part at the seminar, with 80 Euro you already support 5 people to take part. Spread the word by posting this campaign on your Facebook and sending the link to your friends.
Donate here - link to the project on betterplace:
All information about the project you can find on MitOst website:
Copyright: Federation Global Initiative on Psychiatry / MitOst e.V.
Image: Vasily Fedosenko / Reuters