Two therapeutic medical clowns from Israel’s Dream Doctors went to the Bahamas to bring innovative post-trauma techniques to children displaced and traumatized by Hurricane Dorian.
Joining a group of mental health counselors and psychologists sponsored by the International Coalition in Trauma and Resilience, Dream Doctors Smadar Harpak and Shoshi Ofir are training the other professionals in the skills they use daily as part of the medical team at 29 hospitals across Israel.
Hurricane Dorian hit the island nation on August 24. On September 5, a delegation from Israeli humanitarian aid organization IsraAID arrived to help coordinate relief and recovery efforts.
“This is Israel. It’s part of our DNA to be there first to help in a time of crisis,” said Dream Doctors Executive Director Tsour Shriqui.
“The local community in the Bahamas is in desperate need of trained professionals to work with children who have been traumatized by displacement and loss, and to help them regain a sense of control and normalcy.”
The five-day mission to the Bahamas is supported by the Moose Toys’ Happy Kids Foundation.
“At Moose Toys we are constantly inspired by and in awe of the Dream Doctors’ dedication and commitment to helping others in need,” the Australia-based company said in a statement.
“In the wake of the devastating Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas, we are proud to support the Dream Doctors partnering with key local organizations in Florida to lead the medical clowning training and deployment of health practitioners to the affected region.”
Israeli shoe company Teva Naot recently donated 600 pairs of sandals and rain boots to Dorian victims in the Bahamas, who were recently hit by Hurricane Dorian.
Over the past 15 years, Dream Doctors has sent its trained therapeutic clowns on humanitarian missions in Ethiopia, Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, the Philippines, Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand, India, Indonesia, Nepal and the United States.
Last year, Dream Doctors brought their unique skills to the community of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, following the synagogue shooting. Dream Doctors Nimrod Eisenberg and Keren Asor-Kliger recently led a five-day training course in Zurich for 30 Red Cross volunteers who work in refugees shelters around Switzerland.
To contribute toward the Dream Doctors Emergency Response Mission to the Bahamas, click here.