The war in Ukraine has resulted in unimaginable human suffering. Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians have fled their homes and are trying to find safety either in the country or abroad. Others are sheltering in homes, bomb shelters or cellars, while their cities are pounded by Russian artillery. With days passing the severity of the attack is becoming worse and worse.

In response to the worsening situation, and in order to support friends, colleagues and the general population in Ukraine, the Federation Global Initiative on Psychiatry (FGIP), together with several partners, is developing a platform to provide guidance to both mental health professionals and the general population how to deal with the psychological consequences of the war. Click here for more information.

Psychological Aid to Ukraine

Samopomich – psychological support to Ukraine

FGIP, together with the Czech National Institute for Mental Health and GIP-Tbilisi, has developed an on-line psychological aid program. The first Russian-language version, samopomoch, was developed in the fall of 2020 after the repressions started in Belarus. It provides advise to the general population via social media, resources for mental health professionals through a special website and provides free on-line consultations to Human Rights Defenders.

Since the war in Ukraine started, a similar program has been developed in Ukrainian. The platform provides guidance to both mental health professionals and the general population how to deal with the psychological consequences of the war. It advices how to maintain your mental health during times of crisis, what to do to combat e.g. panic, anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts and also where to go in case professional help is needed. A team of Ukrainian speaking psychotrauma experts are answering the many dozens of requests for help on a daily basis. With a growing team of experts we direct people to professional help in surrounding countries and are now setting up a support program for first responders who are facing burnout and the risk of secondary trauma.

The platform can be found via the following links:

facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Samopomich-100316465941232

Telegram: https://t.me/samopomic

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/samopomo.ch

We also have a website with resources and information where people can turn for help: www.samopomi.ch

Since the start of our Ukrainian-language program on February 28 the Facebook channel had over fifty million views while the website had 225,000 users, most of them ostensibly mental health professionals

We also have channels in Russian, which can be accessed:

Интернет: www.samopomo.ch

Telegram: https://t.me/samopomoch

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/samopomoch

If you want to support our work, your donations are most welcome. You can make your donation here:

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Generators for Ukraine

The Federation Global Initiative on Psychiatry is involved in a variety of initiatives aimed at providing support to the Ukrainian population in general and psychiatric patients in particular. The foundation has established a platform for direct psychological support to Ukrainians consisting of a website with self-help information (www.samopomi.ch), various social media information channels and psychological assistance to the frontline workers, e.g. people in rescue services, ambulances, employees of hospitals and activists collecting evidence of war crimes. The facebook channel of the samopomich program has already had more than 50 million visitors. In Vilnius (Lithuania), FGIP has set up a crisis center for Ukrainian refugees with a professional staff consisting of Ukrainian specialists from Mariopol and Zhitomyr.

In addition, FGIP also provides direct material support to Ukrainian psychiatry. The foundation has now purchased eight large generators ranging from 32 to 120 kW, which can be used to provide electricity to entire psychiatric hospitals. These are delivered with priority to hospitals in greatest need, either because they are close to the front where electricity is only available for a few hours per day.

In addition, the foundation buys thermal underwear for patients as well as headlamps with which medical staff can walk their rounds in the wards in the evening and at night when there is no electricity. These lamps only cost 20-25 euros but make a world of difference.

To illustrate the situation, the foundation has produced a series of clips, including the following about a hospital in Chernigiv that was occupied for four weeks:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5p9Dweidvhs&t=9s

A summary clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5AGNrcsRVW4&t=8s

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FGIP clips 2020-2022

Made by Ukrainian filmmaker Lesya Kharchenko and

visualizing the work of Human Rights in Mental Health-FGIP in Ukraine

In 2020, FGIP, together with the Ukrainian Psychiatric Association and the Lithuanian FGIP member Mental Health Perspectives, developed a special program to combat the social isolation of persons with mental health issues as a result of COVID-19. The campaign, Mind the Gap, had several national programs, including Ukraine. For the Ukrainian program we developed a series of clips:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rz39NlCkhtk&t=16s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=78eDB5a17ps&t=1s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cBEv48gBRYQ

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JTPQf0mqavk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nidM38LgOWw&t=15s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jc-5cnlgkmI&t=112s

In 2021, FGIP developed a number of clips for the samopomoch self-help program for victims of State repression in Belarus (www.samopomo.ch), which was set up with FGHIP member GIP-Tbilisi and the NIMH in the Czech Republic. The clips showed people who either managed to overcome their trauma or learned to live with it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IzFZe9D9pAg&t=2s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5GS9NMs0KS0&t=204s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSsDN4MMpG4&t=242s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aKj3qbow82U&t=146s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YNaUO1L5NrY&t=9s

In 2022, following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, FGIP asked Lesya Kharchenko to make another series of clips visualizing the effect of war on persons with mental health issues and, specifically, those living in psychiatric hospitals and in social care homes. The English-language clips can be viewed via the following links:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5p9Dweidvhs&t=13s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ORBkcCYOFL0

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WcIOm1o4_K8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uPc2VHS-fUg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=va4Ii7fg7jc

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rm5x_yCg8kk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5AGNrcsRVW4

 

For more information on the filmmaker Lesya Kharchenko:

https://www.linkedin.com/in/lesya-kharchenko-39b01a19/?originalSubdomain=ua

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Help us help our Ukrainian colleagues!

FGIP has been working in Ukraine for more than thirty years and has a huge community of friends and colleagues there. FGIP is doing everything possible  to help them during these difficult times. We have started a large-scale psychological aid program for the victims of this military conflict. A new self-help program was been set up in Ukrainian that provides resources to mental health professionals and helps the general population to deal with the psychological consequences of this war. Please support us with your donation.