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“International Women’s Day Workshop: '#BreakTheBias'”

On March 8, 2022, GCMHP organized a workshop to flag and discuss the negative social impact on women with mental health disorders, their accessibility to MHPSS services and the role of CBOs in promoting awareness on social misconceptions and negative cultural heritages that affect women and the service delivery to them.

The workshop, attended by 165 participants from HR and MHSSP organizations, was started with presenting success stories of three women who come from different social backgrounds within Gaza Context.

The second part of the workshop was designed to review and reflect on women’s psychosocial issues, through sharing experiences of organizations working in the field of mental health and human rights. The papers presented by these organizations were: ‘Mental Health Services Offered for Women: Accessibility and Challenges’; ‘CBO’s Role in Raising Awareness about Misconceptions Related Mental Health Disorders, especially among women’; ‘Cultural Heritage and its Impact on Women’; and ‘The Conditions of Women with MH Disorders’.

Following four presentations, the space was opened for the attendees, representing CBOs and NGOs, to have a discussion with the four panelists and raise their questions.

Recommendations:

The workshop resulted in a set of recommendations listed as follow:

 1. The necessity of undertake serious efforts to promote awareness on women’s social, psychological and  physiological needs, especially of those who suffer from  mental health disorders.

2. The community needs to have a better understanding of socially supporting working women, especially those with disabilities, through integrating this concept in the advocacy and campaigning efforts. 

2. Mass media need to play a consistent and sustainable role, as opposed to occasional, in flagging the issues of violence against women and stimulate a social change on the stereotypes and cultural misconceptions.

3. facilitating Women’s accessibility to the appropriate MH services through encouraging them to seek these services and orienting the community as a whole about the referral system.

5. highlighting the importance of early detection of women with mental health challenges so as to thwart any further deterioration.