Lombard, IL (25 March 2020) — Zakat Foundation of America’s professional mental wellness project, Khalil Center, has begun providing online psychological counseling and emergency help nationwide during the surging coronavirus crisis.
“There’s a secondary contagion to COVID-19 of panic and anxiety combined with forced social isolation and social distancing,” said Hooman Keshavarzi, Khalil Center’s executive director. “The sudden, unpredicted change has drastically impacted all of our lives.”
The widespread impact on society directly results in detrimental mental health effects, Keshavarzi said. Nor have we any idea how long the crisis and our isolation, voluntary or enforced, will go on.
“We’re social creatures,” he said. “We need social connectedness. In the interest of our own safety and to protect others, we go against our very natures and social distance. That comes at a cost.”
A raft of studies clearly shows the harmful consequences of social isolation on mental well-being, he said. “There’s a great moral need for mental health providers to step up and support our communities.”
Society’s current healthcare paradigm makes that ethical walk on a financial tightrope.
Zakat Foundation’s Executive Director, Halil Demir, will call on supporters to help underwrite the steep costs.
“We recognized the effects and building repercussions from long-term quarantine in such fearful times, whether voluntary or imposed,” Demir said. “This is especially true for people who are alone or already coping with psychological challenges. We don’t want to leave people to struggle alone.
“Our psychological and psychiatric mental health services with Khalil Center — which have grown, really exponentially, since we launched this Zakat Foundation project in 2010 — are now proving even more invaluable to Americans of every community.”
As COVID-19 casts its unsparing shadow over all of us, he said, “it’s priceless to have someone to talk to about what you’re going through and how to manage it.”
The Khalil Center’s Coronavirus crisis response plan is four-fold:
- Increase its already strong web therapy services.
- Provide informational videos with practical steps for family and self-care in light of COVID-19 (www.youtube.com/khalilcenter).
- Expand its crisis line options, both live chat and call-in (1-855-5HELPKC).
- Offer live webinars (see khalilcenter.com for scheduling).
Please give to the mental healthcare of the anxious and suffering in your community.
Support Zakat Foundation’s Khalil Center’s Coronavirus psychological crisis counseling.