The Psychosocial Support Unit's mission is to use evidence-based and culturally sensitive Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) approaches to creating a just and stable society that is free of inequity and conflict by empowering marginalized groups to acquire and enjoy their universal rights and freedoms.
‘Psychosocial support’ refers to the process of facilitating resilience within individuals, families and communities by respecting the independence, dignity and coping mechanisms of individuals and communities. It aims at enhancing the ability of people to bounce back and restore normality after adverse events, and refers to the actions that address both the social and psychological needs of individuals, families and communities.
The beneficiaries of ARDD-Legal Aid’s service are an overwhelming amount of members from marginalized, underrepresented and underprivileged groups of society. When these already vulnerable groups, such as women, refugees and children, find themselves in emergency situations or positions of rights-abuse their vulnerability is exacerbated by virtue of their socio-economic position.
It is often the case that the root cause of the problem is not identified or addressed and so they are unable to break out of the vicious cycle of economic, social, or legal suffering they are in. Therefore whilst they may be facing a legal problem, a solution by way of the law may not be enough to deal with the root cause of the problem. This was part of the reason the Psychosocial Support Unit was created, as it was realized that there were deep-rooted social problems that were creating barriers towards holistic and completed solutions for persons of concern.
Protection and Empowerment:
The PSS Unit will thus provide protection to refugees and vulnerable Jordanians by using evidence-based mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) interventions to prevent sexual and gender based violence (SGBV), and to empower women, men and children to realize their human rights. The PSS Unit will become more narrowly but deeply focused on areas for which there is the greatest need, and areas in which other MHPSS agencies are less present.
Throughout the individual and group sessions, the PSS Team works to create guides specific to the needs and identified gaps of vulnerable groups, particularly refugees, and embed these findings in the services they provide.
Psychosocial Support & Legal Empowerment:
The PSS Unit works closely together with the Legal Team whereby based on the analysis of legal needs and the strong links with the psychosocial situation of the clients, assistance is provided from both departments, especially for women. The Psychosocial Officer can receive requests for assistance from the following places: directly from beneficiaries, from ARDD-Legal Aid’s lawyers once a lawyer has already seen a beneficiary and decides there is need for PSS assistance, from field or project work, from ARDD-Legal Aid's case managers and from external partner agencies. Most of ARDD-Legal Aid's referrals come from the organization's legal aid unit and from partners, including UNRWA and UNHCR. The PSS Unit provides both face to face and telephone counseling sessions for both refugees and marginalized Jordanians.