The Unfortunately, mental healthcare and access has received

The grant proposal
would bring a resource fair that would promote both mental and physical services.
Educating people about mental health is important to change their perceptions
and attitudes about people who suffer from mental illness. This would be
achieved by spreading mental health awareness by reaching communities in the
rural who are usually underserved. This will be very important in reducing
stigma which is the number one deterrent of seeking mental health and also
promoting mental health literacy in the general public.

Problem Identification 

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More than 80% of people who are suffering
with mental health problems live in developing
world (Basic Needs, 2017). Mental illness is
common in Kenya, at least one in four Kenyans (11.5 million) will suffer at one
point in their lives (Merab, 2016). Kenya struggles to provide adequate and
comprehensive care to people with mental disorders. The mental health
policy that was meant to govern and provide guidelines on mental health
services has been neglected and ignored. Unfortunately, mental healthcare and
access has received little attention and remains a
low policy and budget priority (Meyer & Ndetei, 2015). Less than 0.5 % of the total health health care budget is spent on
mental health (Menil, 2013). 

Mental health is a taboo topic in Kenya- usually not spoken
about and hidden due to the stigma attached. 
There is only one public mental hospital; Mathare National Hospital that
services the needs of more than 43 million. In addition, the limited mental health facilities available are highly centralized and
concentrated in Nairobi and thus out of reach for many living in rural and
remote areas. This limits accessibility of services for people with mental
health illness- from the common disorders such as depression and anxiety to
neurological and severe mental disorders.

The majority of Kenyans who have mental health illness do
not receive treatment. Ten percent of young Kenyan males and seven percent
of young females report being depressed (World Bank, 2004). Many
people endure stigma, prejudice, abuse, discrimination, and isolation which prevent
them from exercising choice, pursuing treatment and support and plan for the
future. Mental illness perpetuate the cycle of poverty by decreasing the ability of someone to function at
paid or unpaid labor and also decreasing social, emotional and
economic productivity.  

A serious problem exists in the rural villages whereby millions
of Kenyans who have mental rural live their lives without diagnosis
or treatment. The economic and social burden associated with mental
illnesses in Kenya continues to increase both in direct and indirect costs. Mental disorders ranks in the top
ten illnesses that causes disability-more than 37% worldwide(). Many Kenyans do not seek
treatment due to a number of factors: severe stigma and discrimination, shortage
of mental health professional, limited resources, uncertainty about where to
get treatment, and lack of information.  Kenyans
who have accese mental healh facilities don’t return due to poor quality care
and inappropriateness of services. With proper allocation of resources such as
community fairs can lessen the barrier between patient and wellness.

 

Proposed Achievements 

Delivering information and
services in a culturally engaging setting is successful
in building trust and relevance in the village. A health fair that is
established in a place where people feel left out and ignored will be an
essential tool to reduce mental health disparities especially among the
youth. The overall goal for the fair
would be to increase the mental health literacy of the community. In order for
people to feel comfortable with obtaining mental health services, they have to
know they are not alone.

Outputs- on site participant
evaluations conducted with surveys

·        
500-1,000 people served at the fair  

·        
12 hours of services delivered to the
community- how many people screened 

·        
Intent to modify behavior  

·        
 Increased knowledge gained through educational
sessions

·        
Increase in confidence of people who may be
suffering from mental illness

Outcome: follow-up
evaluations are completed by the new micro-clinic established.

·        
Twenty percent increase for people going to
the clinic

·        
Modified behavior- reduced stigma, abuse,
discrimination, and isolation of people with mental illness 

·        
Willingness of participants to pass along
information learned to family and friends 

·        
Improved living conditions for those living
with mental illness in the village 

·        
Increased partnership and collaboration among
the health providers and traditional/faith healers 

·        
Changed perceptions, attitudes, norms, and
feelings 

 

  Design of the program 

The resource fair will incorporate mental and physical
service providers in the County of Kiambaa. It will also partner with
traditional and faith healers who play an integral role in the mental health
system. Kiambaa is an ideal location because Access Afya, a grass roots
organization, recently built a micro-clinic. The resource fair will
serve as a multi-faceted tool: to publicize mental health services, educate the
community, understand the needs of the community, provide information and
tools, fight against stigma, and develop community partnerships. The religious leaders will also serve to build trust and legitimacy
to the fair

This event will be held once a year for the next three
years during the month of October 10 for World Mental Health
Day. The event will be held at the carnival grounds which would be ideal
to accommodate service providers, parking, community participants, music vendors,
and playground. Many families visit during the weekend for
games, activities, and social gatherings. The service providers will be
recruited and the event will be advertised by visiting local
churches, radio stations, community gatherings, local restaurants
and bars, sporting games, circulate posters,
rallies, elders’ meetings, and musical events. The event will be set
up with canopies, chairs, and tables. Some of the canopies would be
used for planning such as hospitality booths, security, first aid,
games and activities for children such as coloring, painting, games,
and one for food and beverages. Incorporate physical health providers
to serve as an added incentive for families who have questions
about their or their families’ physical health.   The event will also have a live band and music for
entertainment. The entertainment will ensure the environment is comfortable and
enjoyable for the people. Volunteers who will have registered for the day will
help the health professionals, maintain a clean and safe environment, set up
and tear down. The resource fair will have three welcome booths that will serve
as the gateway. These booths will have local service providers to engage the
participants with interactive activities and educate them on available services
and provide them with resources of where to get the desired health services.
The fair will have 500-1,000 participants who will flow in and out.

Throughout the event there will be wellness and self-care activities
that will be performed to keep participants involved and interested. These will
include: zumba, trivia, yoga, stress alleviating exercises and techniques,
music therapy, tag, potato sack race, workshops specializing on self care such
as sleep, healthy eating and coping skills, and jump roping a game beloved my
all Kenyans. The fair will help reduce stigma which is the number one barrier
for accessing mental health services.

Timeline

Months 1-3

1.     
Recruit and hire an event
coordinator

2.     
Recruit volunteers, community
leaders, traditional/faith healers to help plan and promote the fair

3.     
Coordinator holds a meeting once
a month- logistics, delegate responsibilities, entertainment, food, donations,
service providers, marketing

Months 3-6

1.     
Secure event location

2.     
Submit permit applications

3.     
Coordinator continues with monthly
meetings for updates and progress

Months 6-9

1.     
Secure permits and vendors

2.     
Confirm service providers
participation

3.     
Coordinate media outreach and marketing
to different venues

Months 9-12

1.     
Reserve tables, chairs,
canopies, tents, balloons, raffle tickets

2.     
Purchase snacks, beverages, and
food

3.     
Confirm key note speakers

4.     
Confirm radio, television and
newspapers advertisement for that day

5.     
Conduct weekly meetings for
event updates and progress

6.     
Conduct a meeting for event
success and future improvements

 

 Funding sources 

There were seven
potential funding that were selected for funding sources. First, Access Afya was selected due
to its current work in Kenya. The organization utilizes technology to provide
low cost, but high quality health to underserved communities. Their mission is
to make affordable health services available to everyone. As of this year they
have expanded into three new communities with three new micro clinics (Access
Afya, 2017). Second, Africa Mental Health Foundation is solely
focused on providing affordable and high quality mental services by partnering with multiple
stakeholders.  Partnering with the
organization is important because it also trains mental health professionals to
provide mental care to rural communities in Kenya. Third, Intra Health International was
chosen because of their ongoing work in Kenya and their mission to ensure
health workers are trained and supported to perform their jobs. Fourth, the
Kiambaa County was selected because Kenya recently went through a process of
devolution. According to Marangu et al, “there is recent evidence that Counties
within Kenya are reassessing the needs of their jurisdiction and planning
health services for those who have been neglected”( Marangu et al, 2014. P. 4). Fifth, UN foundation and
Bill Melinda gates foundation were selected due to their work in improving
access to health especially in Africa. Lastly, USAID was selected because it
has operated in Kenya for many years and has been vital in healthcare delivery
in Kenya.