Mental health problems know no boundaries; nor does discrimination. They affect people of all ages, all income groups and all cultures.
That is why in 2018, we launched Time to Change Global – a programme to challenge mental health stigma and discrimination in Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, Uganda and India.
The programme was delivered in partnership alongside international disability and development organisation CBM and five country-level partners: Mental Health Society of Ghana (MEHSOG), Grameena Abyudaya Seva Samsthe (GASS), Gede Foundation, Basic Needs Basic Rights Kenya (BNBR) and Mental Health Uganda. In each location, a group of Champions with lived experience of mental health problems shared their stories, speaking out and advocating for their rights.
Celebrating the global programme
After two and a half years, the first phase of the Time to Change Global programme ended on 31 October 2020. We could not secure funding for a second phase of the full programme. However, programme activity will continue in Nairobi, Kenya for a further 3 ½ years.
Programme partners will of course continue to tackle mental health stigma and discrimination in many different ways. CBM play an important part in the global mental health space. NGO partners in Ghana, Nigeria, India and Uganda will also be taking parts of the work forward in a variety of different ways
“I feel proud… Now I see the potential that I did not know I had.” (Champion)
What we achieved
Through the work and dedication of all programme partners, the Time to Change Global programme boosted the capacity of mental health organisations and advocates in the Global South.
111 Champions in Ghana, India, Nigeria, Kenya and Uganda were supported to share their stories, run events and advocate for their rights. Programme monitoring and evaluation shows that Champions increased levels of knowledge, skills and confidence after participating in the programme.
Champions took this forward through formal roles within the partner organisations and informally. In all five countries, many Champions were inspired to advocate through their own channels and networks. Champions launched YouTube channels, blogs, support groups and other platforms as they fight for the rights of people with mental health problems.
Sharing our learning
Together, programme partners and Champions developed valuable tools, materials and resources to help others to tackle mental health stigma and discrimination – ensuring a long-term impact of the programme.
Tools have been designed to be accessible – they require little resource and can be used by individuals as well as organisations. This includes the Conversations Change Lives anti-stigma toolkit, which was developed to share learning and tools from the across programme.
"Amazing work is happening around the world to end mental health stigma. Exchanging ideas and sharing challenges faced will make all our work stronger." (Edwin, Champion, Kenya)