Mental Health

How can we determine if a person is suffering from mental illness or merely has a character flaw that needs improvement?


Mental health is a field that is shrouded in mystery. For the family dealing with what may be a mental health issue, it is a nightmare. The fear of stigma prevents them from seeking advice and they sink further into the whirlpool of the unknown. They yearn for a knowledgeable and compassionate hand to reach out and pull them out of the abyss but asking the advice of friends and neighbors is out of the question. And so they continue to sink, helpless, tormented, drowning in despair.

Knowledge is strength, and the more we know about mental health issues, the more those who are struggling can be helped.

In an attempt to lift the fog enveloping the world of mental health, Ezer Mizion’s Mental Health Division includes  the promotion of  mental health awareness by means of a  public lecture series initiated in collaboration with Pa’amonei Tikvah – a non-profit organization dealing with mental health issues – and the Bnei Brak municipality.

Each lecture addresses a different issue faced by mental health professionals and family members of the mentally ill. The most recent lecture, at Ezer Mizion’s Jacob Fried national headquarters building in Bnei Brak, focused on the topic: “Facts and Myths about Mental Health Medication” and was delivered by Dr. Sigmund Sankevitz, director of the Mental Health Clinic at the Sheba Tel Hashomer Hospital.

The event attracted a large audience. This enthusiastic response clearly indicates that the series is filling a vital community need. Attendees left the lecture empowered to understand and to deal with the hitherto baffling issues that have come their way.

Ezer Mizion’s Mental Health Division offers a variety of psychological support services and rehabilitative programs for those afflicted by psychological disorders, emotional issues and mental illnesses.  These services include:

  • Rehabilitative employment centers that provide mentally handicapped people with basic vocational training and employment, and ease their integration into free market employment.
  • A 24-hour crisis hotline for non-medical emergencies, including mental health crises such as suicide attempts or severe manic episodes.
  • A psychological referral team that recommends appropriate psychologists, psychiatrists and counselors to people grappling with emotional disturbances, mental health issues or difficult relationships.
  • A network of psychiatrists and psychologists throughout Israel who provide their services at a discount to patients referred by Ezer Mizion.
  • A Big Brother/Sister Program that pairs individuals suffering from mental illnesses with trained mentors who provide companionship, offer assistance with basic daily function, and teach the skills necessary for independent living.

In addition, counseling services and support groups are made available to the families of the mentally ill at no cost. As understanding of mental health becomes known, Ezer Mizion remains on the cutting edge of new developments, bringing healing and relief to those who had been suffering in silence.

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