Mental health and Psychological Support (MHPSS) Program

VoP FAM has partnered with Action Against Hunger (ACF) as part of the project funded by the Madad fund of the European Union, delegated to the French Development Agency (AFD) entitled “Empowerment of Syrian Crisis-Affected and Iraq Internal Displaced Populations and Institutions of Neighbouring Governments. It is part of the EU Madad-funded “Resilience and Social Cohesion Programme” (RSCP)”.

The project, who ran from November 2017 until August 2020, included mental health and psychosocial awareness sessions targeting refugees, IDPs and host communities in Zakho and Sumel Districts of Dohuk governorate especially in areas located within 5 kilometers radius of the PHCCs.

This activity aimed at improving social resilience and raising awareness about mental health and referral pathways that were created or reinforced during this project. This is viewed as an essential part of mental health system strengthening approach in Dohuk.

VoP FAM staff along with 10 other members of community based organizations (CBOs) were trained on the Awareness Sessions Guideline for Middle East that was prepared by ACF’s experts. This guideline includes passing information about MHPSS and referral pathways in an interactive participatory manner.

This awareness campaign has reached 4735 Beneficiaries (319 Male adults, 1511 Female adults, 1638 Males under 18 years old and 1267 Females under 18 years old).

The awareness sessions were facilitated by VoP FAM and CBOs staff and were delivered to groups of beneficiaries consisting of 10-30 BNFs per group

The key messages of this MHPSS campaign were:

  • MHPSS: The definition and core concepts of mental health and psychosocial support. And how it applies to all human beings and forms an integral part of their health determined by social, environmental, biological and psychological factors.
  • Stigma: What is sigma, how sigma about mental health affects people in the community, examples of stigma and how we could help people suffering from mental health problems by reducing stigma.
  • Psychological distress: Definition, causes, signs and effects of distress. How self-care, social support and professional services can help manage and overcome psychological distress.
  • Depressions and suicidal Ideas: What is a Depression, symptoms of depressions, types of depressions, how to help people with suicidal ideas and the best methods of treatment that can help alleviate suffering and prevent suicide.
  • Referral pathway: what is a referral pathway and the mechanism of the existing NGO and public services referral system.

Click here to download the program MHPSS key messages

RSCP website :