Issue Six: MENTAL HEALTH
Despite the government’s Mental Health policy of 2012, mental health is a significantly over-looked and misunderstood issue. Mental health is often confused with learning disabilities or with other disabilities which affect people’s behaviours. The extent to which the population is affected by mental ill-health at some point in their lives (one in four people according to WHO) is not recognised because it is assumed that mental ill-health is synonymous with ‘madness’.
From the outset, CSSP encouraged CSOs to consider mental ill health as a hard to reach issue and as a result of this, a number of CSOs secured grants for work in this area. It is believed that the work done by CSO partners has encouraged some regional government to dedicate more resources for mental health support services in local clinics. And the links between mental ill-heath and khat addiction are now becoming better understood.
The Results Review report looks in depth at a specific initiative by one CSO. What is especially interesting about this example in Dire Dawa is that the CSO applied learning from its pioneering work on safe fostering and adoption of children to the issue of mental health.