In February 2016, I started working as a psychologist for a national non-governmental organisation in Turkey. UNICEF supported the project that I was working on to provide MHPSS services for Syrian refugees. For 2 years and 3 months, I gained experience in the Syria context and culture. I delivered evidence-based and culturally appropriate MHPSS services. Since then, I have taken different roles in the MHPSS area worldwide for different countries and contexts.
I registered as MHPSS Expert for the Dutch Surge Support MHPSS Expert tool in April 2021. My first deployment as MHPSS Technical Working Group Coordinator started in June 2021 for WHO Azerbaijan Country Office. The deployment’s main goal was to establish an inter-agency MHPSS coordination mechanism. We focused on emergency preparedness and response plan for the Nagorno Karabakh conflict. During the 3 months, I had the opportunity to see the critical need for an inter-agency MHPSS coordination mechanism to provide technical MHPSS support for all stakeholders. Thanks to national and international coordination, including WHO Headquarters and Country Office, The Netherlands Embassy, Dutch Surge Support, the need for MHPSS coordination was addressed, and all necessary action has been taken. After being a part of this effective mechanism as an MHPSS Expert, I decided to support wherever there was a need for MHPSS coordination to make MHPSS services easily and equally accessible for everyone.
After working in different contexts to improve myself as an MHPSS Expert, I wanted to return to the first context I worked for to contribute and create a better impact. As Technical Officer (MHPSS) in WHO Gaziantep Office, the main objectives are to provide technical support for WHO’s implementing partners in North West Syria and continue supporting inter-agency MHPSS coordination mechanism. While completing the first month of my deployment, all necessary briefings were conducted to understand the scope of the work and create a detailed work plan to follow during the 3 months. For the following months, the main goals are to support WHO’s MHPSS implementing partners to align MHPSS services with the global standards and coordinate with a structured mechanism. Also, Gaziantep is the heart of humanitarian response for Syria crises and the location of most UN agencies and I/NGOs. It makes coordination very important and easy to act. Besides, it is a wonderful city to discover a good environment and food.