BasicNeeds-Ghana led the Alliance for Mental Health and Development (Mental Health Alliance), a civil society network of some 120 NGOs/CBOs in Ghana, to carry out a series of activities to mark the 2019 World Mental Day (#WMHD2019) with funding support from UK aid. The activities were undertaken to promote the 'Speak Your Mind' Campaign, a global mental health advocacy initiative led by the United for Global Mental Health organisation, and led in Ghana by BasicNeeds-Ghana.
It has come to light that most Ghanaians might be willing to be levied in order to support mental health services in Ghana. This came to light from a Facebook poll conducted on the organisation’s Facebook page between 29th August to 4th September 2019. Poll participants were asked if they would be willing to pay GHȻ0.50p extra on their favourite beverage to help finance mental health services in Ghana.
The Alliance for Mental Health and Development, made up of civil society actors in mental health, held a national meeting in Accra on Wednesday, 18th September 2019 under the theme "Improving Mental Health Policy and Service in Ghana" . The meeting was funded by UK aid. In attendance were representatives of regional alliances of mental health and development from Northern, Upper East, Upper West, Greater Accra, Ashanti, Brong Ahafo and Central Regions.
BasicNeeds-Ghana, on August 29, 2019, organised an inter-ministerial forum which brought together heads of key ministries and government agencies to discuss sustainable ways of financing community mental health in Ghana. This forum was a follow-up to an earlier one that was held in April 2018. The forum formed part of activities of a STAR-Ghana Foundation funded project titled “Accessible and Quality Mental Health Care for Poor and Marginalised Persons with Mental Disorders.”
On June 14, 2019, the Department for International Development led a visit of development partners to Accra Psychiatric Hospital and to a community mental health peer support group in Jamestown. The Department for International Development (DFID) of the UK Government has, for many years now, supported the development of mental health services aimed at improving the lives of people with mental health issues in Ghana. The visit was, therefore, meant to showcase UK aid’s contribution towards eliminating stigma people with mental illness face and improving availability and access to psychological help for those who need it.
BasicNeeds-Ghana has successfully ended the first phase of a dry season gardening project funded by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Adaptation Fund. Activities of the first phase of the project, titled: “Promoting Gardening for Improved Mental Health Outcomes and Productivity in Northern Ghana”, started in May 2018 and came to an end in April 2019.
BasicNeeds-Ghana operates the Model for Mental Health and Development either fully or selected modules of the model in 155 districts, municipal and metropolitan areas across 14 of the 16 regions of Ghana. The organisation implements initiatives directly and through implementation partners in these operational areas. BasicNeeds-Ghana operations in Ghana is divided into through operational areas namely:
A week-long training is underway in Tamale to train primary stakeholders of the Maternal Mental Health Project funded by UK aid. The project, titled “Enhancing Maternal Mental Health of 29,520 pregnant women and mothers and their children to realise maternal and child health in Ghana” is intended to address mental health needs of women within the maternal and child healthcare service delivery system. Facilitators are from UK’s National Health Service (NHS).
BasicNeeds-Ghana has re-launched the UK aid funded Maternal Mental Health project during a well attended ceremony at the British Council in Accra on November 28, 2018. The five-year project, titled "Enhancing Maternal Mental Health of 29520 pregnant women, mothers and their children to realise maternal and child health in Ghana", seeks to improve the maternal and child health of poor and vulnerable pregnant women and new mothers and their children as a way of improving their quality of life.
On November 30, 2018, BasicNeeds-Ghana convened a meeting with the Greater Accra Regional Alliance for Mental Health and Development as part of a UK funded Maternal Mental Health project titled "Enhancing Maternal Mental Health of 29520 pregnant women, mothers and their children to realise maternal and child health in Ghana". The purpose of the meeting was to discuss with alliance members ways in which they could incorporate maternal mental health in their programming as civil society organisations and individuals interested in mental health development.