Iregi Mwenja

Job role: 
Member type: 
Service User Representative/Advocate
Brief Biography: 

Iregi MWENJA is a mental health advocate with many years of childhood lived experience. He grew up in rural Kenya where faced the unbearable social challenges of growing up with undiagnosed ADHD. He received his diagnosis as an adult, a revelation that became a turning point in his life. Though an accomplished wildlife biologist, he left a well-paying job as a Country Director of an International NGO to establish a mental health non-profit - Psychiatric Disability Organization (PDO).

PDO works to foster mental healthcare and advance the rights of people with mental illness focusing more on the socially disadvantaged in his community in Nakuru, Kenya. Through his organization, over nine thousands underserved of Kenyans have received affordable diagnosis and treatment, and the much-needed social support for those in recovery.

Iregi was a Mental Health Speaker at the 43rd UNAIDS Board meeting in Geneva. He is a 2022 winner of the Waterfalls Global Award, 2022 Echoing Gree Fellow, a 2021 D-30 Disability Impact Honoree, and a 2021 MIT Global Challenges winner as a Solver. He is an Acumen Fellow, UC Berkeley Beahrs Fellow, USWFS MENTOR Fellow, and Kinship Fellow, an Honorary Member of the Global Mental Health Peer Network, and a Member of the Advisory Board of the US-based Generation Mental health (GenMH). He is a contributing author of the book ‘Mental Health, Legal Capacity and Human Rights’ by Harvard Medical School published by Cambridge. He divides his time between mentorship, training, consulting, and disability rights advocacy.

Human rights
Empowerment and service user involvement
Prevention and promotion
Treatment, care and rehabilitation
Regions of interest: 
North America
Children and adolescents
Older adults
Families and carers
Minority populations
Humanitarian and conflict health
Communicable diseases (e.g. HIV/AIDS, TB)
Disorders of interest: 
Child behavioural and developmental disorders
Psychosis/bipolar disorder
Depression/anxiety/stress-related disorders
Alcohol/drug use disorders
Dementia and other neurocognitive disorders
All disorders