Intisar Foundation

#1MillionArabWomen For Peace

General

Logo
Organization Name
Intisar Foundation
Formerly Known As
Intisar Foundation
Brand
First & Only Organization Working On Self-Empowering Women In War Through Drama Therapy
Tagline
#1MillionArabWomen For Peace
English-Language Website URL
Type of organization
nonprofit, foundation,
Year Founded
2018
Lead Photo For Profile
HQ Location: City, Country
Number 22, Mount Ephraim, Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN48AS
HQ Physical address
Beirut, Hamra, Spears, Antwork, Lebanon
HQ Mailing Address
Beirut, Hamra, Spears, Antwork, Lebanon
Primary Contact and General Inquiries
Ms. Karima Anbar
CEO of Intisar Foundation
karima.anbar@intisarfoundation.org
History

How are we the first and only organization self- empowering Arab women in the Arab world to become agent of Peace?

The Intisar Foundation’s mission – psychologically healing Arab women suffering from traumatic experiences through the use of drama therapy – is directly linked to our vision of fostering Peace in the Arab world. We are firm believers that self-empowering traumatised Arab women can transform them into the Arab world’s most impactful Peacemakers through a bottom-up peacebuilding and self-empowerment process.

As mothers, educators, and caregivers in the Arab world, women are a fundamental part of social change. Psychological support for women is a greatly overlooked area in the humanitarian sector and we are working towards closing this gap by providing non-stigmatizing, gentle and effective therapies using Drama Therapy.

Intisar Foundation aims to serve as a hub for actionable knowledge to catalyse the empowerment of Arab women by (1) providing psychological support programmes of drama therapy to Arab women impacted by trauma of war and gender based violence, (2) conducting rigorous in-house research on the impact of its work in order to offset the significant dearth of research in the field of drama therapy and psychology in the Arab world and (3) supporting the education of new female Arab drama therapists.

Each of these strategic goals is directed towards achieving the foundation’s One Million Arab Women initiative, a 30-year plan to alleviate psychological trauma in one million Arab women affected by the brutality of war and gender based violence through the use of drama therapy.

Activity

Mission

The work of Intisar Foundation is intrinsic to the success of any sustainable Peacebuilding effort in the Arab world because our mission is to ensure psychological recovery and psychosocial progress of Arab women traumatised by war and violence. A testament to that is our #OneMillionArabWomen initiative, a 30-year-plan to alleviate war and violence trauma in one million Arab women through the use of drama therapy. In support of our main purpose, we also also encourage excellence in the drama therapy education and research and development fields in the Arab world and beyond.

Intisar Foundation amplifies its work by framing it around three strategic initiatives:
– Field work

– Research

– Education in drama therapy

Field work

The Intisar Foundation’s approach to providing psychological support to Arab women suffering from the trauma of war and violence is considered innovative because:

  1. It utilizes drama therapy as the only psychological intervention that addresses body, emotions, and the mind (the neuroscience-based approach)
  2. It utilizes drama therapy as the most effective psychological intervention that successfully circumvents mental health stigma due to employing various activities (from dance to storytelling) which (i) enable women to avoid self-stigmatization and allow themselves to overcome their individual traumas at their own pace through, and (ii) prevent any potential social stigmatization hampering the women’s psychological progress by being perceived as ‘a creative arts group session’ and not ‘a psychological therapy session’
  3. It is delivered by Arab drama therapists, in Arabic, and within the refugee camps in Lebanon and Jordan or through online sessions open to all Arabic-speaking women
  4. Is done in a group setting (20 women) over 12-16 weekly sessions and monthly sessions for a prolonged year, which creates a support group and instills a sense of belonging to one another in a larger community. In being inclusive of all nationalities, including both refugee women and women from the host communities, the Intisar Foundation sessions have proved to be one of the few settings where Palestinian, Syrian, Jordanian and Lebanese women work together in a cultural setting

OUR IMPACT IN NUMBERS: 2018 – present

Reached 250+ women affected by war and violence trauma

Reached 1,200+ indirect beneficiaries

Completed 2,300+ hours of field work

Geographical reach potential:

Current field work – 2 countries (Lebanon and Jordan)
Future field work – 20 other countries of the Arab world

Global reach potential:
Online reach to the Arabic-speaking population of 400+ million native and non-native speakers.

Research

We insist that our philanthropic capital must be used effectively and for maximum impact in order to bring about systemic sustainable change for Arab women.

For that reason, Intisar Foundation’s work is meticulously documented, researched, and analysed in order to ensure that the foundation continues (i) delivering measurable and evidence-based results, and (ii) to help offset the significant dearth of research in the field of drama therapy and mental health in the Arab world.

Intisar Foundation’s first qualitative research paper published in David Journal ( https://intisarfoundation.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/coverpagePDF-merged.pdf ) has shown that the Intisar Foundation approach leads to significant results:

  • 78% of our participants experienced increased self-esteem, ranging between 14% and 33% improvements in self-reported scores
  • 75% of our participants experienced a reduction in PTSD, ranging between 8% to 25% reduction in self-reported scores
  • 75% of our participants experienced a reduction in depression, ranging between 13% to 37% reduction in self-reported scores
  • 75% of our participants experienced a reduction in anxiety, ranging between 11% and 48% reduction in self-reported scores
  • 75% of our participants experienced an improvement in satisfaction with life, ranging between 9% and 18% improvements in self-reported scores
  • 75% of our participants experienced increased positive emotional experiences and decreased negative emotional experiences

Furthermore, Intisar Foundation’s work has shown evidence of changing deeply entrenched cultural narratives, such as Arab women ending the practice of child marriages due to a newly-adopted belief that they can protect their daughters by encouraging them to gain education that will lead to their future economic empowerment and advancement. The foundation’s team also reports the cases of female victims of domestic violence standing up to their abusers. Plus, another outcome of drama therapy reducing PTSD symptoms associated with aggression and low-impulse control is the reduction of household violence either directly from the mother or indirectly through the reduction of tensions within the household and facilitating better emotional growth and communication within the family.

In addition, Intisar Foundation published the Research Booklet “Can Drama Therapy Evoke Neuroplastic Change In The Brain?” to raise awareness on the benefits of this psychological approach for alleviating war and violence trauma. ( https://intisarfoundation.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/Neuroscience-Booklet.pdf )

Our team of drama therapists and mental health experts will continue to work on a number of research projects that explore the qualitative and quantitative impact of drama therapy on vulnerable populations. This work is expected significantly to contribute to the field of mental health and psychosocial support in the Arab world and beyond.

We ensure that our work meets the highest quality standards due to being supervised by the Intisar Foundation’s Technical Committee compromising of the world-renowned experts in drama therapy.

Education in drama therapy

Intisar Foundation’s educational arm is aimed at nurturing the talent of future Arab drama therapists in order to secure the required number of qualified experts who would continue on delivering the foundation’s programmes in Arabic and help it achieve its One Million Arab Women initiative.

In September 2020, the foundation signed a memorandum of understanding with the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik (USEK), a private university in Mount Lebanon, to support the enrollment of 15 female Arab students into USEK’s master’s curriculum in drama therapy in Arabic language.

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VALUES

Intisar Foundation relies on the values of integrity, innovation, and inclusiveness.

Integrity

Intisar Foundation is committed to the highest level of ethical and social standards. As a UK-based charitable organisation, we ensure that our programmes are meticulously designed with the wellbeing of our beneficiaries and our staff at the forefront. We work with world-renowned experts in the fields of psychology and drama therapy to ensure that our interventions comply with the ethical guidelines of psychological care through the use of consent forms, identity protection, and guaranteeing dignity for the women we work with. Our programmes, research activities, and publications fully adhere to standards made to respect the anonymity of our beneficiaries.

Innovation

We have developed a culturally sensitive and effective psychological approach while maintaining the core principles of drama therapy, which is well known and often used in Western countries but, until now, it has not been developed for adequate implementation in the Arab world.

Inclusiveness

Intisar foundation is committed to providing its support to women from all backgrounds and walks of life. Our programmes are open to any woman, regardless of nationality or background, who might benefit from our programmes.

 

Country (or countries) where active
Lebanon, Jordan, and in the Arab world