These are the soldiers who give Israel ‘Peace of Mind.’ So friends, it is our duty to help them find their Peace of Mind.” — Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks
During their service, IDF combat soldiers are perpetually tense and kept at high alert, ready to protect their homeland and people at a moment’s notice. They may have lost friends on the battlefield, and oftentimes carry physical and emotional battle scars. In fact, 80% of the IDF veterans on our program experience mild to severe post-traumatic symptoms.
Every year, thousands of released Israeli combat soldiers face the difficult transition back to civilian life.
Throughout the nine-month Peace of Mind intervention (administered by Metiv, the Israel Psychotrauma Center), team members receive approximately 65 hours of group counseling, plus individual therapy as needed. The most intense part of the the therapeutic process takes place while the unit is hosted for a week by a Jewish community overseas.
San Diego’s first POM program is being hosted by Chabad Carmel Valley, December, 2019. Future hosting opportunities are open to all Jewish organizations in San Diego.
Peace of Mind provides time and space to process combat experiences in a supportive and safe environment.
The distance from Israel, and the community support during this phase of the therapeutic process, play a crucial role in creating a safe, quiet and supportive environment. For many of the veterans it is the first time they realize the depth of love and support for them, and for Israel, in the Diaspora. This gives the veterans a much broader view to the meaning of their military service.
Following the intervention, two-thirds of participants report significant post-traumatic growth, including increased coping flexibility. Other measures show significant increase in social support, functioning in everyday life, emotional regulation, decrease in depressive symptoms, better communication with their families and more.
Jewish communities around the world, including those in Canada, Great Britain, and the United States, have brought Peace of Mind veterans into their homes. By hosting these veterans, Jewish communities play an active role in shaping Israeli society and promoting a healthy transition to civilian life. Will you join us in bringing this valuable program to San Diego?