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Media Stories

Keep #DignityInMind this World Mental Health Month

Mental health care organizations work together to raise awareness.

October is World Mental Health Month and on the 10th we commemorate World Mental Health Day. This year a group of local organizations within the mental health care sphere teamed up to amplify their efforts to raise awareness.

Together they’re working towards removing the stigma related to mental illness and to bring about dignity in mental health. This is also the theme set by the World Health Organization for this year’s efforts.

“Mental health legislation can have a decisive role to play in fostering conditions for the provision of quality mental health care, reducing stigma, discrimination and marginalisation and ending institutionalisation. Furthermore, the participation of people with psychosocial disabilities in the drafting process is critical to ensuring that their dignity is respected and that their human rights are effectively protected and fulfilled,” says Michelle Funk from the WHO’s department of mental health and substance abuse.

In addition to the strong case made by Funk, there’s also a strong economic argument for preventing mental illness and scaling up mental health care. South Africans suffering from mental illness together lose a total of R30 billion in earnings, whilst government spending on mental health care amounts to only R500 million. (Click here to view source.)

We hope that by working together our call for action will be heard.

During the month of October a number of events will be held in support of mental health care in South Africa.

Visit to view a calendar of events as well as some useful information on mental health care in South Africa.

You can show your support of this initiative by attending any of the exciting events and by sharing the hashtag #DignityInMind on social media.

For any media queries or to schedule an interview with any of our knowledgeable researchers and mental health care professionals, contact media[at]

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EMERALD Media Stories

EMERALD Accelerates Progress to Strengthen Mental Health Systems

FROM 7 to 9 September global leaders of the EMERALD project (Emerging mental health systems in low- and middle-income countries) convened in Cape Town to report on the latest findings and progress of their multinational six-country research project.

The Emerald project is a global mental health research partnership aimed at improving mental health systems and capacity-building in South Africa and five other low and middle-income countries. It is generating new evidence on the cost of scaling up evidence-based mental health services in this country, Ethiopia, India, Nepal, Nigeria and Uganda. The aim is to advance sustainable development goals in support of the post-2015 development agenda of the United Nations and WHO’s Global Mental Health Action Plan through research and advocacy.

“Emerald is undertaking groundbreaking research that will assist governments to strengthen health systems by investing in mental health care. The purpose of our meeting is to meet with policy makers from Ethiopia, Nigeria, South Africa and Uganda and share our research findings, to enable the use of our research in policy and practice,” says Professor Graham Thornicroft, leader of the Emerald project from King’s College, London.

EMERALD in action EMERALD Group

Read the press release here.

Visit the EMERALD website here.