Just 10 days after a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., experts from the Israel Trauma Coalition arrived to help people cope and offer concrete tools to educate teachers and community leaders about how to move forward.
Fourteen students and three staff members were shot dead in the Feb. 14 shooting, making it one of the worst school massacres in history.
Israel Trauma Coalition’s Yotam Dagan from Natal Israel Center for Trauma and Resilience and Alan Cohen from the Community Stress Prevention Center, in coordination with the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Consulate General of Israel in Miami, in addition to local health and counseling bodies, led sessions for about 600 clinicians, law-enforcement officers, social workers, parents, first responders and members of the clergy, according to a report by Israel21c.
“The psychological shockwaves of the event have been tremendous,” Dagan told Israel21c. “We met as many community members as we could, enabled them to talk about their trauma and then shared Israeli best practices for the day after.”
The coalition will return to the area for followup, like it has done in many locations it has served, including Houston in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, Mexico following the deadly earthquake in September and Las Vegas following that mass shooting last October.
The Israel Trauma Center was created in 2002 at the height of the Second Intifada in Israel to treat the masses of people who were traumatized by unrelenting Palestinian terrorism in the form of shootings and bus bombings. It has sent 17 delegations abroad since its inception.