Book chapter / Mental Health Care NGOs in Kerala

Altruism and Activating Neighbourhood Care for Persons with Mental Illness in the Community: Mental Health Programme of Mental Health Action Trust. (161-84)

In Balagopal, Gayathri, and Aruna Rose Mary Kapanee. Mental Health Care Services in Community Settings: Discussions on NGO Approaches in India. Singapore: Springer, 2019.

Abstract: Mental Health Action Trust (MHAT) is a volunteer-led, community mental health programme, which provides free bio-psychosocial mental healthcare to the most vulnerable among the poor and wandering persons with mental illness in partnership with Institute of Palliative Medicine (IPM), Kozhikode through a network of palliative care clinics in some northern districts of Kerala.

The programme was initiated in response to a demand from community members. The community-based clinics provide free medical treatment, supply of food grains, financial support for education of children, provision of transport facilities for clients, livelihood activities, financial support, counselling and linking clients with social organisations and government departments. The community programmes are entirely funded by local community members through school children, door-to-door campaigns, shop owners, etc. as that is sustainable in the long run.

About the book: This book discusses approaches used by NGOs in formulating and implementing mental health care in the community in the context of high treatment gap, insufficient public expenditure on health, human resource shortages, heterogeneity of communities as well as cultural beliefs in India.

It uses a qualitative case study approach to document and analyse the work of some major NGO-run community mental health programmes in India, all of which cater to vulnerable populations and are in different and diverse regional settings. It casts the spotlight on envisioning community mental health in policy and law, implementation by the government, how it is practised by select NGOs and the challenges involved in programme implementation.

More info:

Shared to the eGroup by V. Sriram, Chief Librarian, K. N. Raj Library, Centre for Development Studies, Thiruvananthapuram.

Reposted from Kerala Scholars eGroup

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