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Shields of Resilience

Our combat soldiers are at risk of PTSD, trauma, and depression. They need tools and support to safely transition from the battlefield.

Shields of Resilience is a major mental health initiative, giving IDF soldiers the critical support they need to re-enter combat and return to civilian life.

The Urgency of this moment

Mobilizing during Swords of Iron

MOMENTUM’S SHIELDS OF RESILIENCE MENTAL HEALTH INITIATIVE

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The Shields of Resilience program takes place in two parts. The first part is 1-3 days after being released from the combat zone. This is the first line of defense against PTSD and a way to assess the overall health of the unit and its members.

The second part an average of 4-6 months later when the team is called back to the reserves. At this point, they reconvene for a two-day retreat that gives them tools to successfully transition to the next stage and build resilience.

Soldiers showing signs of PTSD are being referred for additional assistance to the IDF’s Mental Health Division. The IDF’s Research Division is studying the effectiveness of the program and evaluating the impact of these interventions.

Here for our soldiers during & after their service

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OUR EXPERTISE

Leading Shields of Resilience

To launch Shields of Resilience, we assembled a steering committee with the IDF that included top experts in the fields of PTSD and resilience as well as high-ranking IDF officials. These collaborations have enabled us to create the highest caliber program for our brave IDF servicemen and women.

 

History of Partnership with the IDF

In 2008, the founders of Thank Israeli Soldiers created an Israeli nonprofit, Momentum, to work intensively with the IDF, transitioning soldiers from service to civilian life. Since then, there have been over 100,000 graduates of Momentum programs and we work with all of the IDF’s combat units.

Momentum has developed a unique understanding of the psyche of soldiers and has skillfully trained civilian mental health professionals to work within the IDF’s very sensitive protocols. In 2022, our “Back to the Future” transition program was awarded the IDF Chief of Staff’s Award for Excellence in Programming and Innovation. Today, the IDF is a partner in most Momentum programs, demonstrating our strong collaboration and integration.

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“Shields of Resilience is a shift to a more evidence-based, scientific approach to PTSD. We work to move the trauma from the amygdala, the more primitive part of the brain, to the frontal cortex where we have more control. The idea is to catch soldiers early enough so that they control the story rather than the story controlling them.”

Professir Yori Gidron, University of Haifa, Momentum Psychological Advisor

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