Thu | Mar 22, 2018

Within the Mind - Helping Hands

Published:Sunday | March 26, 2017 | 12:00 AM

"We need to change the culture of this topic and make it OK to speak about mental health and suicide," Luke Richardson, an ice hockey coach said it best as it pertains to mental illness.

The Jamaica Mental Health Advocacy Network is a group of young professionals that aims to help eliminate the stigma that pertains to mental health. The young people are professionals in the fields of mental health, social work, and community development and advocacy.

They are dedicated to addressing mental illness and the effects that it has nationwide. This is done through promoting and preventing mental health while providing quality care through advocacy, education, research, and service through a committed network of practitioners and stakeholders.




They have also implemented JaMHAN which has implemented events like the Fulbright-Humphrey speaker series - Mental Health: Everyone's Business, World Mental Health Day Symposium 2013; Mental Health in Older Adults, World Mental Health Day Symposium 2015; Dignity in Mental Health; and Psychological First Aid, World Mental Health Day Symposium 2016.

While JaMHAN envisions improved lives for people with mental illnesses living in Jamaica, there is Mensana who tackles the family perspective. JaHMAN counsels the individual and Mensana is a voluntary, non-governmental organisation that works to improve the coping skills of families affected by mental illnesses.

The group also aids the individual but and help them to cope and become productive and independent citizens. They have a support group that is an outlet for those who suffer from mental illness.

Mensana's mission is as follows.

1. Assist families and individuals affected by mental illnesses to cope

2. Advocate for better mental health policies and services in Jamaica.

3. Reduce stigma and discrimination by encouraging a more enlightened public response to mental illness.

4. Help persons diagnosed with mental illness to achieve independence as much as possible.


Contact Information

(876) 569-4192


Twitter: @jamhan_ja

Instagram: @jamhan_ja

Mensana has support group meetings on the second Saturday of every month except August at 11 Caledonia Avenue, Kingston 5 (opposite Nuttall Hospital).