BasicNeeds-Ghana “Supporting Government To Build A Mental Health System” – Extension

The Department for International Development (DFID) of the United Kingdom (UK) in Ghana extended an additional GBP£250,000 grant under the Accountable Grant scheme to BasicNeeds-Ghana. This extension grant is to enable the organisation continue with the implementation of activities of the project titled  “Support Government of Ghana to build a community mental health system”. It seeks to address varied, but mutually reinforcing problems and needs confronting mental health in Ghana. These needs include:
  1. Lack of capacity of Ministry of Health (MoH) to provide access to quality and community based mental health care services
  2. Lack of provision of mental health services integrated into primary health care including maternal health care
  3. Near absence of non-drug therapeutic services to support recovery and rehabilitation, including lack of secure livelihoods opportunities for people with mental illness or epilepsy and their primary care-givers and poor capacities of Self-Help Groups (SHG) of mentally ill people and their care-givers to influence district level plans and policies
  4. The low prioritisation and investments in mental health by local and central government to address mental health issues and an ingrained public lack of understanding that has not made it possible for effective understanding of mental health problems, and this includes low understanding among policy makers on inclusion of mental health in development processes.

The project will run for a nine-month period, starting from July 2018 and ending in March 2019. This allows the project to continue for virtually another year, having previously gained a no-cost extension for the project that was scheduled to close at the end of March 2018. With this grant, BasicNeeds-Ghana seeks to focus on activities that will guarantee the sustainability of the successes chalked up by the original project and help shape the future direction of the organisation.

Key result areas include:

  • Enhanced access to Community Mental Health care services for poor and vulnerable persons with mental health care needs
  • Traditional authorities and local authorities to be sensitive to mental health issues and supportive of poor and vulnerable people with mental illness or epilepsy
  • Women, men and youth stabilised from their mental ill-health/ epilepsy in the communities supported with financial and material resources to engage in sustainable livelihoods activities
  • Enhanced organisational capacity for sound governance and efficient operational and financial management

Primary beneficiaries are women, men, boys and girls living with mental illness or epilepsy and their primary carers and families within the three regions of the north. It will help them access quality mental health care treatment services within reasonable distances to their communities and improve their socio-economic conditions.