In conflict-affected areas of Iraq, collaboration is key to effective humanitarian support

In Ramadi, one of the cities most affected by the conflict with the Islamic State group, Première Urgence Internationale has deployed a team composed of a psychologist and a psychosocial worker to assist internally displaced people.

Séance soutien psychosocial en Irak

This Iraqi woman was supported by our psychosocial worker in Ramadi (credit : Première Urgence Internationale).

A psychosocial support in Iraq

In the city of Ramadi, in central Iraq, our team was recently contacted by Ranya, a mother of four who lost her husband several years ago. The 48-year-old Iraqi woman, that lives in an informal settlement, was referred by Première Urgence Internationale to another organization for financial assistance because she was experiencing financial difficulties. During her discussions with the Première Urgence Internationale psychosocial worker, it was quickly identified that Ranya was suffering from many difficulties, notably the fact that she had had to flee her home and had to provide for her four children. Première Urgence Internationale offered to support her in regular individual sessions, an offer accepted by this mother who was able to share the suffering of having lost her home because of the bombings, or that her son is suffering from an illness.

A holistic approach to respond to difficulties

The psychosocial worker from Première Urgence Internationale offered Ranya a number of suggestions on how best to deal with her difficulties, particularly on how to manage her emotions and solve daily problems. Our teams ensured that a collaborative approach was put in place, which allowed this Iraqi woman to take an active role in improving her living conditions and well-being, a collaboration that is crucial for effective humanitarian support. Through this approach, she was able to identify her resources and strengths during the various sessions.

This support is especially needed in conflict-affected areas, where personal situations are often complex, combining financial problems with physical and mental health issues. It is important that these links be recognized and that the multiple factors be addressed in order to tackle the underlying problems and not only their consequences. Première Urgence Internationale is committed to building relationships with humanitarian actors whose services are complementary in order to ensure an integrated and comprehensive approach. For example, when Ranya was able to receive financial assistance, her concerns about her debts diminished, allowing her to be in a better position to receive psychological support.

This project is funded by the European Union Humanitarian Aid (ECHO).

Find out more about our mission in Iraq.

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