Welcome! The MHPSS Network is a growing global platform for connecting people, networks and organizations, for sharing resources and for building knowledge related to mental health and psychosocial support both in emergency settings and in situations of chronic hardship. We aspire to building and shaping good practice in support of people affected by difficult events or circumstances.
The Mental Health & Psychosocial Network aspires to improve mental health and psychosocial well being in emergencies and situations of adversity. We do this by improving access to people, resources and knowledge.
Who can join?
Membership is free and open to the wide range of people and organizations engaged with mental health and psychosocial support. Whether you are a front-line worker, a university researcher, a government policy-maker, a humanitarian manager, a journalist, a trainee practitioner or student, a member of an affected community or a development donor – this site is for you!
How does this work?
The online platform provides a way for members to share resources, join groups and interact with others, based on their work and interests. We recognize that technology alone is not always sufficient to enable exchange or grow communities of practice. So the network also has a team of online hosts who support members in using the site, and in helping members connect with others across the network. The mhpss.net hosting team are themselves MHPSS practitioners, with diverse backgrounds and working in different parts of the world. Look at their profiles to learn more about them!
Who Drives the Network?
You do! The Network provides a platform for members to lead and sustain exchanges and collaboration within the field. Members can take initiative to create groups around specific interests and actively host these. Through your sharing resources and your engaging in discussions amongst peers, the life of the network is driven by the members who use it. The day-to-day online functioning of the network is guided by a team of regional hosts with diverse interests, specific areas of expertise and located in different parts of the world. Every member is assigned a host to welcome and support them in participating in the Network and using the website. Together the hosting team is there to help you make connections and build your community. The hosting team currently comprises four Regional Hosts, a dedicated Host for refugee integration and resettlement, and two Network Hosts.
- Lucy Hillier (South Africa), Regional Host for (Western, Eastern and Southern) Africa
- Gina Donoso (Ecuador), Regional Host for Latin America & the Caribbean
- Mohamed Elshazly (Turkey), Regional Host for the Middle East and North Africa
- Mike Quilala (The Philippines), Regional Host for the Asia-Pacific region
- Emilia Pietka-Nykaza (UK), Global Host for Refugee Integration and Resettlement
- Chathuri Jayasooriyya (Sri Lanka), Network Host
- Gayathri Jayasooriya (Sri Lanka), Network Host
On institutional matters, please contact our Coordinator, Alison Strang or our Manager, Maleeka Salih. For all other inquiries, please contact our hosting team. If you need further information about the Hosting Team, or need to contact one of them, please contact us.
Who Supports the Network?
An Advisory Board Group, representing some of the diversity of the broad MHPSS field, is tasked with the responsibility for governance of the Network and sustaining its vision and ethos. Current members of the Advisory Board are:
- Margriet Blaauw (Switzerland), IASC MHPSS Reference Group
- Maria Bray (Switzerland), Terre des hommes
- Elizabeth de Castro (Philippines), Psychosocial Support and Child Rights Resource Centre
- Ananda Galappatti (Sri Lanka), The Good Practice Group
- Lisa Langhaug (Zimbabwe), REPSSI
- Peter Ventevogel (Switzerland) UNHCR
- Nana Wiederman and Louise Juul Hansen(Denmark), IFRC Psychosocial Reference Centre
We are guided by these principles:
- Pluralistic and inclusive
- Local context at the centre
- Light in structure and process
- Flexible and evolutionary
- Follow clear remit
- Realistic goals
- Sustainable structure and finance
The Advisory Board operates according to an agreed terms of reference. An MHPSS Network Annual report is published each year. The MHPSS Network received financial and in-kind contributions from UNICEF (New York Headquarters), UNHCR (Geneva Headquarters), WHO (Geneva Headquarters), IFRC (Secretariat in Geneva & Psychosocial Support Centre in Copenhagen), Terre des hommes-Child Relief (Switzerland), REPSSI (Secretariat, Johannesburg), Lloyds TSB Foundation for Scotland (Edinburgh), The Good Practice Group (Colombo) and individuals, based in both high-income and developing countries. At present the primary financial support to the MHPSS Network comes from a three-year grant for integrated innovation in global mental health from Grand Challenges Canada. The MHPSS Network continues to depend on the support of users and key stakeholders to provide and expand the facilities offered. To provide feedback, explore partnership and offer financial support, please contact us. Here is the group that gathered for the annual face-to-face meeting of the Advisory Board and hosting team in Sri Lanka in February 2013.