Providing Relief to Evacuees in Okayama and Mental Health Support in Kumamoto
By Mayumi - JISP Country Director
Japan IsraAID Support Program (JISP), IsraAID's branch in Japan, deployed on July 9th an emergency response team to the Okayama prefecture in western Japan, two days after the onset of torrential rainfall resulted in devastating flooding and landslides. Some 150 fatalities were reported with over two million people ordered to evacuate their homes.
This was allegedly the heaviest rainfall in decades, and one of the worst weather-related disasters in Japan since the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. The rain caused extensive damage across large areas of the country.
The Japan IsraAID Support Program reached the Okayama prefecture and began distributing urgent relief items in evacuation shelters and assessing the immediate medical and post-trauma psychosocial needs. IsraAID's professionals provided Psychological First Aid and mental health support to those evacuated.
JISP continues to support vulnerable groups in the Kumamoto region, affected by the 2016 earthquakes. JISP’s mental health staff recently visited three public elementary schools to provide psychosocial activities to 53 children with special needs.
Taiy, JISP’s affiliated clinical psychologist, and Mayumi, JISP Country Director, performed Brain Gym PACE activities that are effective in helping people with attention disorders, learning disabilities, communication and behavioral issues. JISP specialist provided two learning sessions, one for parents and another for teachers to enhance their understanding of the challenges the children are facing and the effectiveness of the Brain Gym activity.
As a result of the training session, parents and teachers will be able to utilize the Brain Gym activity with their students and children. Parents reported that their children had increased confidence, improvement in physical movement, and were more focused due to the Brain Gym activity..
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