The “Izun”( “Harmony”) non-profit A political organization to all the Israeli society Jewish and Arabs was established in 2001 by volunteers and professionals who identified the unique need for treatment of backpackers and young people in crisis between the ages of 18-40, most of whom come from normative-functional backgrounds and are now defined as “dual diagnosis”, that is, drug abuse combined with mental impairment.
The organization’s vision is to grant unique, innovative and holistic treatment options to as many young people in crisis as possible, while maintaining its groundbreaking and entrepreneurial nature and its position as a local and international leader in the fields of treatment, prevention, research and policy. The organization has a number of existing projects and is currently also working on new ones:
“Izun” (Harmony) Village” – the organization’s first project, which is a unique and innovative treatment-rehabilitation village, the first of its kind locally and internationally, that operates as a time-limited (4-6 months) on-campus program. The village is located near the S’dot Yam Kibbutz. We treat young women and men, ages 18-40, who come from functional-normative backgrounds, who experienced a crisis, generally for the first or second time, that occurred following the use of drugs (generally cannabis and hallucinogens). accumulated experience shows that this population of patients includes young women and men who suffer from a variety of traumas (to date the village has treated some 600 post-trauma victims out of the 1,928 young men and women who have been treated), young people who went backpacking abroad (before COVID-19) and while abroad experienced a mental trauma that requires treatment, young people who experienced a similar trauma in Israel following similar events, and young people with a variety of additional traumas.
The “Middle Way” Stabilization Home in Caesarea – Approximately two years ago with the COVID-19 implications and as part of the organization’s strategic plan, it was decided to expand the solutions that the organization offers, and approximately a year and half ago the “Middle Way” stabilization home was opened in Caesarea. The stabilization home is intended to serve as an alternative to psychiatric hospitalization
for people undergoing an acute mental crisis who can be helped without being admitted to a psychiatric hospital. The “Middle Way” stabilization home facilitates
treatment over a period of a month and a half, for people (generally young people) who can overcome their mental crisis or the deterioration of their condition in an at-home environment with support, containment and intensive professional treatment, and thus it reduces the chances of psychiatric hospitalization and the trauma associated therewith. The home can accommodate 12 people, and to date has treated approximately 112 young men and women. The treatment model is based on the knowledge accumulated at the village and offers a holistic model that also provides unique and individual care to each person. The organization plans to establish additional “stabilization homes” to expand this unique treatment model to other potential patients with a variety of additional traumas.
The organization aims to reduce the number of people who suffer mental crises and therefore also acts in the field of prevention. This activity includes the following programs:
“The Israeli Warm/Care Home in India” which has been operating for 18 years in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Israel Anti-Drug Authority. Some 15,000 Israeli backpackers visit the “Israeli Warm Home in India” each (5-month) trekking season. The home has been closed now for two seasons due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Backpacking Preparation Workshops in the IDF – Such workshops were held for approximately 12 years in the framework of the “Preparation for Civilian Life” workshops that are held approximately a month before soldiers are discharged. Some 8,000 combat and combat-supporting soldiers participated over the years.
By operating these programs, as well as other similar programs, the organization assists in reducing the number of people who will undergo mental crises in the future. The comprehensive treatment, rehabilitation and prevention programs that are operated by the “Izun” (Harmony organization have made it one of the central pillars in the national response for treating victims of new drugs and preventing their use.
Plans in the Pipeline
As part of our growth and in order to continue to provide highly suitable solutions to specific populations, based on our knowledge and experience, the organization is in the midst of developing additional treatment solutions: