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I’d like to devote this post to NATAL,

Israel Trauma Center for Victims of Terror and War

NATAL Homepage.

Q: First, what is trauma?

A: ” A traumatic event is when a person experiences a combination of:

  a) A sense of immediate threat to the physical and/or emotional well-being of himself or another.
  b) Flooded by emotions of the helplessness or fear.”

Click here. for full response.

Q: How can PTSD ( Post-traumatic Stress Disorder) be treated?

A: ” Professional treatment for post trauma: the first step is not easy.
Although entering appropriate professional treatment is very important for victims of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (P.T.S.D.), the process is not as simple as it might appear at first glance. First, the victim must acknowledge the need for professional assistance. Many people, including trauma victims, do not hurry to seek professional psychological treatment because psychological therapy is still accompanied by a negative social stigma, because they consider beginning therapy an admission of weakness, because the uncertainty inherent in therapy causes anxiety or because beginning therapy means taking a step in the opposite direction from the avoidance they have been using until now.

In addition, it is not always easy to find a professional who understands the issue of trauma and the accompanying phenomena nor is it easy to develop closeness with and trust in a stranger.”

Click here.

Q: Tell me more about NATAL’s services.

A: Have a look at this page with a short youtube clip.

Q: Who is Dr. Roni Berger?

A: Dr. Berger is clinical psychologist who developed the Mobile Trauma Unit in Sderot. He explains its conception and how it functions with its group of psychologists and therapists who go into the community to treat trauma victims.


There’s nothing new in Sderot

More than eighteen months ago, I reached the realization that Sderot had, for many years, been taken captive by the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and I decided to do something to support the city’s residents in a permanent, on-going manner. The shortage of professional personnel in the city, the fear of venturing out for psychological therapy in public institutions (some are unprotected), discomfort because of the stigma and the desire to treat family units as a whole combined to give birth to the idea of the Mobile Unit: experienced professionals who specialize in trauma, visit families suffering from anxiety at least once a week, in coordination with the Welfare Department, and treat them according to a special therapeutic model, developed specifically for this purpose. Despite concerns that residents of the city would not be receptive to this service, the natural suspicion of some local institutions providing psychological services and the opposition of conservative professionals, who thought the Mobile Unit broke through boundaries that characterize the therapeutic process, the Unit quickly became a tremendous success.

Full link here.

Listening to Dr. Roni Berger yesterday at the NATAL conference yesterday in Sheffayim, I could only hope that everyone would be fortunate enough to have someone like him around in case of utter trauma. His voice, his presence, his calm manner instills immediate trust.

We’re lucky to have him, someone who’s used his skills with trauma victims all over the world, from the Tsunami victims to those in Katrina and Mumbai.

Please have a look at the work that NATAL is doing.

Judih, Jan 9/09


One response to “NATAL

  1. JewWishes

    What an excellent post, and very informative.

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