Gaza Women Get Helpful Psychological Support
Gaza women get advice on coping with difficult living conditions
Meet the psychologist working on PSS women sessions in Gaza
Soha Mosa is a psychologist and therapist who works at the Women’s Health Centre in Jabalia, in northern Gaza. For years, the 40-year-old worked with several organizations and projects in the mental health field. Last December, Soha joined Anera’s three-month project to support women with psychological support.
With the aim of easing stress and other psychological issues for women in Gaza, the program worked with three groups of 20 women each and provided additional sessions for affected children.
Dr. Mosa admits there was some reluctance among the women at first to talk about their problems. "There were abused women. Women who were forced to beg in order to get food for their children. Women with children and husbands who suffer from mental illnesses."
But Dr. Mosa was pleased to witness healthy interaction among the participants and described her experience with the project as exceptional. "We taught them personality-strengthening practices, breathing, relaxation exercises, emotional release through dancing, as well as tools to strengthen their relationship with children and husbands."
The psychological support services varied, from home visits and individual sessions to couples sessions. "I presented sessions on positive-thinking practices, communication skills with husbands and children, and general tension reduction practices.” She smiles when she remembers how several women shared positive feedback when they applied what they had learned to better deal with their family’s problems. “The beautiful thing is that the women learned from each other's experiences."
For Dr. Mosa, psychological support is desperately needed for women in all stages of their lives. "In Gaza, we live in a continuous state of emergency, tension and economic crisis because of military escalations and economic and social pressures."
She underscores the lack of support for Gaza’s women. "Most have to bear the burden of providing for their family because their husbands are out of work." She hopes the psychological sessions will continue in order to better support the women of Gaza, especially in marginalized areas.