Tunisia – Amidst continuous sand storms on the Tunisian-Libyan borders, Psychosocial consultant Dr. FathiFleifel endures the harsh climate in the desert in order to tend to the psychosocial effects caused by events in Libya.
In IFRC’s “Transit” camp, Dr. Fleifel, who heads PRCS’ Psychosocial Program, examines needs, holds training sessions and handles patients. He is part of a specialized team which tests the readiness and preparedness of the Tunisian Red Crescent Society to tend to the psychosocial effects of the Libyan war on the lives and behavior of refugees.
Present at the borders since the 26th of April, Dr. Fleifel says: “My mission is to examine the Tunisian Red Crescent’s Psychosocial Support needs and capacities, determine the needs of refugees in the camp, develop a capacity building plan for the Tunisian National Society and build the intervention skills and capacities of psychosocial teams and volunteers. Tunisians have a great capacity to learn and to help others. There are around 500 persons living in the camp, mostly from Africa. They feel lost, bored, and unable to control their situation and they wish to return to their homelands as quickly as possible. They suffer from psychological conditions that affect displaced populations in general due to the pressure and discomfort they witness. Some of them tend to be violent, and these harsh weather conditions do not make things any easier”, he said.
Dr. Fleifel described PRCS’ work on the borders as “exceptional” and said that PRCS has been successful thanks to its unique experience in the field of psychosocial support.
Speaking about Dr. Fleifel’s participation in this mission as part of the IFRC team, Dr. Younis Al Khatib, PRCS President, said: “This participation stems from PRCS’ humanitarian role . The Society has taken part on many previous occasions in efforts to face disasters and crises in various regions. PRCS has also worked within the sanitation team in the same camp last April”, he added.
Dr. Al Khatib said that this participation responds to a request submitted by IFRC in order to help face the humanitarian and psychosocial impact of events in Libya.
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