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.
“Young People and Mental Health in a Changing World”
BasicNeeds-Ghana and Mental Health Society of Ghana Call on Government to Improve Mental Health System to Meet Needs of Young People
Today, 10th October, 2018 is World Mental Health Day. It is a day set aside by the United Nations Organisation and led by the World Health Organisation to acknowledge efforts in improving global mental health, by increasing awareness and enhancing practices and services. The 2018 World Mental Health Day is marked under the theme: Young people and mental health in a changing world.
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is supporting BasicNeeds-Ghana to implement a project aimed at enabling Persons with mental illness or epilepsy in the Savelugu Municipality of the Northern Region to attain food security and meet their nutritional needs. Target beneficiaries, numbering 100 of which 58 are female, are being supported by the project to take up dry season gardening as a sustainable livelihoods option.
The United Kingdom's Minister of State for Africa, Mrs Harriet Baldwin MP, took time off of her busy schedule to visit a self-help group (SHG) of people with mental illness or epilepsy and their care-givers at the Nima- CDR Community Social Center during her working visit to Ghana on August 28, 2018. This peer support group and several others are among self-help groups supported by BasicNeeds-Ghana with funding from UK aid.
This is a 36 month project funded by STAR-Ghana. It is intended to improve community mental health treatment through increased funding to mental health services. This will be achieved through influencing the Ministries of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD) and all MMDAs, Finance (MoF) to commit resources to community mental health care; working with health care providers to improve community mental health care services; facilitating active involvement of public and mental service users in mental health care advocacy; and advocating for the approval of the Legislative Instrument (LI) of the Mental Health Law (Mental Health Act, 2012, 846). It is the expectation that once all of these are done, it will lead to an effectively functioning community mental health system in Ghana.