World Mental Health Day 2013

PCBR team members are out in full force today to bring awareness to mental health as part of World Mental Health Day.

Our program coordinator, Maxwell Akandem, and Canadian intern Chelsea Humphry are in Accra today at Ghana’s first mental health conference. They are presenting PCBR’s work in stigma reduction within a rural context. Fellow presenters include Professor Sartorius, former director of the World Health Organization‘s (WHO) Division of Mental Health, along with other psychiatrists, researches and nurses working in the field of mental health and well being.

Last night, PCBR volunteer Tom was invited to the Power in You program on Radio Builsa, a program focused on advocacy and empowerment for marginalized peoples. Tom and the program’s hosts discussed potential causes and effects of mental health disorders, the science behind mental health, known aggravators, and successful treatment techniques. There was also a component focusing on treating people suffering from mental health problems with respect and compassion, leading callers to talk about the importance of inclusion and charity. This information was broadcasted to hundreds of thousands of people living across the Upper East Region of Ghana.

Finally, British volunteers are in Uwasi today to attend a community durbar on mental health. Attendees include community members, the leader of the Sandema mental health group, the Uwasi chief, and the psychiatric nurse at the Sandema District Hospital. Together they will discuss the importance of caring for one’s mental health, and ways to help others who are suffering from mental health disorders.