A group of Japanese psychologists offer support to Ukrainian evacuees
More than 1,000 people have been evacuated from Ukraine to Japan since the start of the Russian military operation. Some struggle to adjust to life abroad and struggle with mental health issues. A group of psychologists in Japan launched a hotline to help these evacuees.
The Japanese Society of Board Certified Clinical Psychologists began offering the service on June 1. People calling the hotline can communicate with psychologists in Ukrainian, Russian, English or Japanese.
Okumura Mariko is the senior executive director of the group. She explained that the evacuees faced challenges before arriving in Japan. Many felt their lives were in danger.
Some have been forced to leave loved ones behind in Ukraine.
Okumura also said evacuees are facing new hardships in Japan. They have to adapt to a totally different lifestyle. Russia’s aggression continues and many evacuees do not know when they will be able to return home.
The Senior Executive Director added: “There is not much our service can do. But we hope evacuees can feel that there is a place where their anxieties are understood.
The hotline is available on Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. local time. The group says that a session lasts about 30 minutes. People providing support to evacuees can also use the helpline. The group says that some of them may want to consult the psychologists. The service is for people in Japan only.
The phone number is 03-3813-9990.