Network for Africa
Healthy Minds, Good Lives – Wic Ma Yot Kwo Maber
2022 - 2025
Agago District is a remote and neglected corner of northern Uganda and the site of twenty years of conflict with the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). Two decades of violence have left its communities with a legacy of severe mental health issues, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, and anxiety, as well as widespread HIV.
Currently, there are no mental health resources in the Lapono and Adilang sub-counties and people must travel long distances to access mental health care. Through a three-year project in partnership with Network for Africa and its local partner BNUU, Fondation d’Harcourt aims to improve community mental health services in these two districts.
BNUU’s team will carry out community outreach to raise awareness of mental illness including its signs and symptoms. Engaging local duty-bearers will further community understanding of mental disorders and encourage people to come forward for treatment. This approach, combined with training on mhGAP for duty-bearers and village health teams, will increase knowledge about mental health in the local community.
Monthly mental health clinics run by BNUU at local health centers will offer counseling and health education. Government health workers trained in mhGAP will improve the quality of treatment and provide medication to people in need. Home visits carried out by BNUU in collaboration with village health workers will ensure follow up on the treatment and provide counseling to the caregivers. To reduce isolation and loneliness, support networks for people with mental disorders and their families will be established so that people’s confidence and self-esteem grow, enabling them to find their collective voice and eventually advocate for their rights. They will start village savings and loans associations to reduce their poverty and contribute towards ‘drug banks’ to guarantee ongoing access to the medication they need.
The project will be implemented on the ground by BNUU’s well-qualified and highly trained counselors and field officers, plus a psychiatric nurse. Network for Africa will offer capacity sharing, M&E support, financial advice, fundraising support, and strategy and program management, helping BNUU grow into a strong and sustainable organization.
Village Health Teams (VHT)
Health Center Workers
Regional Referral Unit Health Workers
Field Operations Officers
Community Members sensitized on Mental Health
Individuals received ongoing treatment in Clinics and at home
Caregivers received ongoing treatment in Clinics and at home
VHTs trained in mhGAP
Health Workers educated in mhGAP training
Duty-bearers/Counselors trained in mhGAP