The Nepal Mental Health Initiative on Sunday launched its website containing a publicly generated directory of mental health professionals through a program held at the National College Auditorium Hall.
The Mental Health Nepal website represents the first collective database effort despite individual and organizational attempts to develop similar databases in the past.
According to Saurav Thapa Shrestha, a member of the initiative, “this is an attempt to make information easily accessible to those looking for mental health specialists and to give them a platform that allows them to choose where they can get advice”.
The website offers visitors access to information about mental health professionals, from office hours to fees, and the latest website resources, he said.
It also has a section where visitors can recommend professionals by filling out a form, which is added to the database.
On occasion, participants discussed the importance of databases in mental health.
Anuj Poudel from Pahilo Kadam, Sunita Shrestha from Antarang, Drona Uprety from NIRC, Riju Dhakal from YUWA and Shreeya Giri from Happy Minds participated in the program.
“Bringing organizations together for this initiative is part of a larger goal to advocate for the destigmatization of mental health and a collaborative effort to play a critical role in making this issue a priority,” said Anamika. Nehuray, regional manager at Pahilo Kadam.
The website represents a first step of the Nepal Mental Health Initiative with coordinated advocacy efforts planned to promote awareness of the spectrum of mental health issues in the coming days.
The initiative also plans to partner with other organizations to create a wider network to address mental health issues.
Nepal Mental Health Initiative represents a collective effort of six local organizations (Global Shapers Kathmandu Hub, ANTARANG, YUWA, Happy Minds, Nepal Institute for Research and Communications (NIRC) and Pahilo Kadam) to de-stigmatize mental health in our community.