Community Association for Psychosocial Services (CAPS) is a local non Governmental Organisation with the Strategy of converting resources to results.
CAPS was founded by Sierra Leoneans trained by the Centre for Victims of Torture (CVT), a specialised International NGO. The Vision of CAPS is to enable traumatised individuals, Families and Communities to resume productive daily life functions and activities. Its Mission includes facilitating the healing of traumatised survivors of torture, war and organised violence through psychosocial services to promote community culture for post war Reconstruction and Development.
CAPS main intervention areas include Psychosocial Counselling, Training, Advocacy and Community Sensitization. The CAPS Enabling Access to Mental Health team is one of the three partners implementing the Enabling Access to Mental Health in Sierra Leone programme. CAPS is charged with the responsibility of Nation-wide Sensitisation and Awareness raising on Mental Health issues.
CAPS main activities in this project include:
- To build Public awareness on Mental Health issues in Sierra Leone.
- To bring to the knowledge of the public as to the possibilities and Mental Health facilities that exist within the country.
- To help minimise stigmatization by the public of persons with Mental Health issues.
- To build the capacity of those involved in Mental Health work in the country.
To be able to achieve this goal, a nationwide identification of organisations involved in Mental Health or Mental Health related activities is at the moment in progress. Organizations identified are recorded in a Data Base jointly designed by City of Rest and CAPS. The information collected is to be shared among the implementing partners and the National Mental Health Coalition.
Until you get to field and see the magnitude of Gap that exist in Mental Health in these places particularly the rural communities then one will envisage that the task ahead will not be easy. But we are sure that together as one, we can do it. Mental Health has been the most neglected among all other illnesses because of the stigma and restrain associated with the sickness. It will interest you to know that very few NGO’S (both Local and International) are involved in Mental Health work in Sierra Leone like in most low and middle income countries around the world. The traditional Healers, the Pastors and Imams at the moment, play a leading role in Mental Health specifically in the rural areas because these are the only source of help available to them.
The formation of the Mental Health Coalition is, therefore, a laudable venture in the right direction that should be embraced by all our partners involved in Mental Health work to help improve the Mental Health situation in a country that has suffered from a bloody civil war.
We, therefore, appreciate the effort of the European Commission for the Enabling Access to Mental Health in Sierra Leone programme.
CAPS Project Co-ordinator
Community Association for Psychosocial Services (CAPS)
Babadorie, Lumley, Freetown.
Sierra Leone, West Africa
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com
Tel: +232 (0) 79475007 / +232 (0) 33736993