10 Facts about Mental Health and CBM you didn’t know

People with psychosocial disabilities may be ‘invisible’, have limited access to services and may be excluded from full participation in community life. Know more about mental health and the work we do to ensure full inclusion of people affected by psychosocial disorders.

CBM and mental health

1. 1 in 4 people experience episode of mental illness in lifetime

2. 1 in 10 episodes cause significant long-term psychosocial disability

3. Around 400 million people worldwide are disabled by mental illness at any time globally

4. 85% of these 400 million people are in Low and Middle Income Countries

5. Typically, these low and middle income countries allocate less than 1% of their health budget to mental health and psychosocial disabilities

6. Mental health and psychosocial well-being are largely impacted by war and disasters

7. People affected by psychosocial disorders are often confined or locked up in prisons with no access to medical and mental health care

8. People affected by psychosocial disorders often face stigma and discrimination institutionalised into law, medical practice and all aspects of life

9. Mental health is a human rights issue and has also been included in the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which states that persons with disabilities, including mental health conditions, must participate equally and fully in all aspects of their lives, including treatment

10. CBM’s mental health strategy is based on evidence and good practices, and encompasses advocacy, capacity strengthening and comprehensive services to ensure community development through inclusion of people with psychosocial disabilities

When Yvette (16 year old from Burundi) was three years she had a fever which did not respond to medicine. Mental impairment and epilepsy was diagnosed, she has been taught daily living skills and takes medication for the epilepsy.


CBM and partners – a community approach to psychosocial health

Focus on Community-based Work

CBM promotes the inclusion of mental health work in community-based rehabilitation (CBR) services; the work at a community level consists of a combination of the following:

  • Education helps to strengthen the patient’s position within the community - it also reduces the risk of recurrence of the disability by increasing awareness of the condition and preventative measures.
  • Medication - a combination of medication and psychotherapy is often an effective way to treat psychosocial disabilities.
  • Family support - because feeling connected to people during one’s daily life enhances everyone’s ability to surmount the stress that might trigger depression, supportive network groups for vulnerable people are an effective method of prevention.
  • Practical advice on matters such as community reintegration, empowerment and self-help groups can be beneficial.
  • Livelihood development - The onset of psychosocial disabilities is often associated with the loss of a stable income. By focusing on livelihood development as one aspect of community integration, CBM empowers the person to become an active part of their families, communities and society at large.

Community Mental Health

People with psychosocial disabilities are often ‘invisible’, have limited access to services and are excluded from full participation in community life.

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