Healing the Invisible Scars and Creating a Resilient Israel
How do you bandage wounds you cannot see?
How does Israeli society cope with the trauma of life under daily threat?
NATAL is here to help.
Following the traumatic events of summer 2014, volunteers manning the Helpline for NATAL, the Israeli Trauma Center for Victims of Terror and War, received a phone call from an eight-year boy and his ten-year old sister.
“Our mom won’t stop shaking,” the siblings told the volunteer on the line, “I don’t know what to do.” Their mother, on a quick trip out to the grocery store, had narrowly missed another rocket attack.
Scared, panicked and in distress, she did not know what to do. The children, who had seen NATAL’s toll-free Helpline phone number on television, decided to call for help.
“We’ve received thousands of calls since the beginning of the war,” says Orly Gal, NATAL’s Executive Director referencing summer 2014’s Operation Protective Edge. “And you have to understand every conversation, it’s not like it’s for a minute. It’s a long conversation, to assess symptoms, to give breathing exercises and help them calm down and if need be, to refer to NATAL’s clinical psychological care.”
NATAL’s Helpline provides crisis intervention and long-term emotional support through highly trained volunteers.”
Since 1948, the state of Israel has endured a series of wars, countless terror attacks and constant bombardment of rockets over southern communities. For more than six decades, Israelis have been faced with the challenges of trying to live a normal life within an abnormal reality.
NATAL opened its doors, in 1998, by Judith Yovel Recanati and the late Dr. Yossi Hadar, to address an unmet need in the country of providing trauma treatment to victims of Terror and War. Trauma affects the lives of thousands of people, everyday. It cannot necessarily be seen physically, yet it can severely derail the course of a person’s life.
Today, NATAL is seen as the “go to” trauma organization in Israel for treatment and prevention of post-traumatic stress, training of professionals, resiliency building, public advocacy and research.
Through NATAL’s toll-free Helpline, Clinical Services, Social Therapeutic Club and Community Outreach Unit, NATAL treats thousands of trauma victims and trains thousands more every year
To date NATAL’s professional services have helped more than 200,000 people regain their lives.
For more information on NATAL’s work in Israel and international partnerships through American Friends of NATAL, visit the American Friends of NATAL website.