Psychosocial Support for Vulnerable Persons Displaced by Floods in Bosnia and Herzegovina

The overall objective of the project was to alleviate the psychosocial effects of the recent floods and consequent displacement in Bosnia and Herzegovina, in order to reduce psychosocial vulnerabilities and longer-term social pathologies, and ensure contact and engagement, safety and comfort, stabilization, adequate information gathering, and practical assistance in addressing immediate needs and concerns.

The approach of the project aimed to ensure that the diverse psychosocial needs of the range of flood-affected populations are met, whilst capacitating and building the resilience of governmental agencies to meet the psychosocial needs encountered in any future post-disaster context.

Four multidisciplinary mobile teams, aimed to provide psychological first aid and additionally undertake, in a different setting an assessment of the psychosocial impact and most urgent needs of flood-affected populations. The Centres for Mental Health were well capacitated to provide psychiatric and clinical psychological support but did not have requisite staff numbers and field teams to meet the critical and immediate needs of large number of persons displaced by the floods, neither an expertise to look at non pathological emotional outcomes of natural disasters.