Global Mental Health Inside Stories: Nir Prakash Giri, Kathmandu, Nepal

picNirFaceNicerThis is the second story in the Global Mental Health Inside Stories series. In this series I want to collect and spread information/ideas from people active in mental health from all over the world and specially from low resource settings or fragile countries.
I hope this series contributes to more insight in the challenges and wishes from people active in these settings and adds to a more bottom up movement in global mental health.
Nir Prakash Giri’s answers on 10 interview questions are as follows:

Work location and some background information:
Living and working in Kathmandu, Nepal. I was diagnosed with schizophrenia in 1996 since then I am on clozapine medication.

Brief country profile:
picNIRNepalMapNepal is a country between China and India and has a population of 26.49 million people.
Politics: Nepal is in transition phase, after an overthrow of the Monarchy. Election to the constitution was held in 2008 with a mandate to draft constitution. However this Constitution Assembly failed to draft the constitution and now another constitution election is slated to be held in November 2013.
Nepal is in post conflict scenario after decade of Maoist insurgency.

Overview of work activities:
picNirLogoNMHFMy organisation is the Nepal Mental Health Foundation (NMHF). It is involved in advocacy mainly related to human rights and the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities(CRPD).
The NMHF is founded in 2008 and a leading mental health rights institution in Nepal. It is dedicated to combat stigma and discrimination attached to mental health problems in all sectors of society. It works to promote the hum an rights of people and their families living with mental health problems. It advocates creating a just and equitable society where mental health needs and well-being of all the population are addressed.
It is a national NGO registered with the Government of Nepal and has been implementing various awareness building programs, advocacy as well as several media publications in this field.

The main challenges personally in work/study/life:
Stigma and discrimination related to Mental illness in all aspects of my life.

The main challenges for the organization(s)/colleagues/clients:
Main Challenge for my organization staining it in the long run as there is negligible donor’s money in mental health.

Mental Health Discussion Series

Mental health Discussion Series

The main challenges for the country regarding mental health care:
-Government of Nepal has paid very little attention in Mental Heath. Total budget in mental health is less 0.08% of the health budget which is mainly directed to the one and only mental institution.
-Access to mental health care by general population as most of the Health worker are in cities.
-Lack of trained manpower.

What should be changed in mental health care on a local or national level:
Mental health should be community based and mental health should be integrated into general health care system at primary health care level.

What is the right direction for the global mental health movements:
The two Global Mental Health Movements: The Trans-Cultural Movement, and the Movement for Global Mental Health are in different directions this has created more confusion in the Global Movement.

What can ICT, mhealth and e-learning contribute to mental health care:
There should be an online learning platform, so that we can share our learning and get access to data bases.

Other links and contact information:
The NMHF website
The NMHF Facebook page
Mail address:

With many thanks to Nir Prakash Giri,
Roos Korste, psychologist, international trainer and blogger.

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