Our Top 5 Moments in 2019!
We are delighted to look back over our Top 5 moments in 2019 to celebrate the end of an eventful year within the global mental health movement we all contribute to. We want to thank our members and all global mental health advocates and stakeholders for being critical to this movement. We are proud to enable partnerships and learning among our network to facilitate innovative approaches to mental healthcare across the globe as well as continue to improve the lives of people with mental, neurological and substance use disorders.
Here's a look back at our Top 5 moments!
1. 6,000 Members!
This year MHIN celebrated our 5th birthday where we also reached over 6,000 members on the Network! We are delighted to host the amazing work of innovators, researchers, implementing agencies and mental health stakeholders and showcase what they are doing to improve mental health in their countries, advocate for rights and alleviate stigma.
2. World Mental Health Day: Suicide Prevention
World Mental Health Day takes place every year on 10 October and last year’s theme was ‘suicide prevention’ as determined by the World Federation for Mental Health. MHIN worked alongside the World Health Organization and Speak Your Mind campaign focusing on raising awareness and reducing stigma of mental ill health. MHIN hosts a number of self-harm and suicide prevention related innovations, resources and organisation profiles to help bridge the gap and highlight existing services and great innovations available in different settings.
- RISING SUN (suicide prevention in the Arctic region)
- Suicide prevention in Tunisia
- Iran National Suicide Prevention Programme
- Giving LIFE a chance [To reduce the prevalence of suicide and attempted suicide in the indigenous Embera community of Chocó, Colombia]
- Pesticide Regulation for Suicide Prevention [India]
- Going Off, Growing Strong [suicide prevention in Inuit Youth]
- WHO RESOURCES: World Mental Health Day 2019 - Suicide prevention
- RISING SUN TOOLKIT
- BLOG [Julian Eaton]: Suicide; devastating, common and preventable
- BLOG [Thomas Rohner]: Circumpolar video project aims to curb suicides, encourage resilience [this has 37 videos – great resource]
- MEDIA RESOURCE ON SUICIDE: Mentally Aware Nigeria Initiative (MANI)
- SYSTEMATIC REVIEW: Suicide and poverty in low-income and middle-income countries
- WEBINAR: Mental health promotion and suicide prevention
- International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP)
- Suicide Prevention India Foundation (SPIF) and accompanying blog
- The Yellow Tulip Project represents happiness & hope [USA]. They also remind founder Julia Hansen of her two best friends who she lost to suicide when she was 16. Watch the inspiring TEDx talk
- The JED Foundation that exists to protect emotional health and prevent suicide for our nation’s teens and young adults
- Fique Vivo preventing self-harm and suicide in Brazil
3. MHIN Latin America & the Caribbean
In 2018 we introduced a new website feature called ‘Collaborations’ to introduce more comprehensive knowledge packages on the platform for the uptake of evidence into practice. A collaboration we have grown extensively in 2019 is our MHIN Latin America & the Caribbean regional hub. We are excited to be hosting such amazing resource repositories on our platform and extremely appreciative of the partnerships we have forged with collaborators along the way.
4. Strengthening mental health innovation and advocacy
Ember is a collaboration between the SHM Foundation and the Mental Health Innovation Network, that supports the growth of innovative projects in the field of mental health. We had our first call-out for innovations on the 20th of August for applications from community-based mental health projects working in low- and middle-income countries. We were blown away by the community's response and by all the experiences and stories shared with us, resulting in 159 applications from projects in 48 countries. They showcased a huge range of perspectives and approaches, challenges and strengths, often delivering mental health support with extremely limited resources. Watch this space as the successful applicants will be announced in the coming months! Learn more about Ember and follow them on Twitter and Instagram for more updates.
World Health Organization
The World Health Organization launched key materials and resources as part of their WHO QualityRights Programme on the 27th of Nov 2019. This move to empowering systems and individuals is a key part of QRs aim to transform mental health and social care systems and services towards a person-centered, recovery-oriented and human rights-based approach in line with the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Stay up to date and access the resources on the dedicated MHIN WHO QualityRights Guidance and Training Resource page.
Speak Your Mind
This year, MHIN was proud to be partnering with Speak Your Mind on mental health advocacy with whom we launched two webinars looking at the importance of integrating human rights frameworks within mental health programming (Webinar 1), as well as lessons from advocates on how to make these actionable (Webinar 2). Make sure to check out the great work Speak Your Mind are doing to catalyse government action on mental health to improve the quality and accessibility of mental health services nationally and globally in 15 countries.
5. Mental health in Africa
On the 20th of November, the Royal African Society, in partnership with the Centre for Global Mental Health and the Mental Health Innovation Network held the 'Mental Health in Africa: Innovation and Investment' Conference. The event brought together African and global mental health leaders to review mental health innovation, investment and progress in meeting the objectives set out in WHO’s Mental Health Action Plan by 2030, and plan for how to bring about transformative change. Discussions were bolstered by the locally-driven priorities generated through a linked conference that took place in Burkina Faso between the 5-6 November 2019. Led by the West African Health Organisation and CBM International, the event convened African leaders to discuss regional strategies, and feed back to the London conference, adding the perspective of Francophone and Lusophone priorities.
- These video recordings have been cross-posted with permission from the Royal African Society's Facebook page.
- Access the programme for more details on speakers and topics covered
- Check out the professional photos captured at the event (Credit: © Ivan Gonzalez)
- Read the blog from Director of Royal African Society, Nick Westcott and Julian Eaton, Senior Advisor to the Mental Health Innovation Network
- Take a look through the Twitter story of how things unfolded on the day
- Listen to the BBC World Services podcast on the conference
Thank you for making 2019 another successful year in knowledge exchange, partnership, and learning and we look forward to a fruitful 2020!
Image credit: Ivan Gonzalez