Mental Health and Wellbeing for all in Pakistan
CareTech Foundation, along with the COSARAF Foundation, developed a three year programme with the British Asian Trust to transform mental health services in Pakistan, increasing access to support and reducing stigma. Impact assessment has shown that the programme improved awareness of mental health issues, as well as improving access and provision of mental health services.
Working with partners in Pakistan, British Asian Trust was able to provide direct support where most needed, ensuring trusted delivery through women only support groups, mental heath support alongside clinical treatment plans, developing a programme designed specifically for mothers and another providing referral service from addiction and substance abuse support for street children and adults.
IMPROVED AWARENESS: Needing to pivot its face to face community outreach programme during the pandemic, British Asian Trust and its partners launched a multi-channel campaign to raise awareness of mental health and signpost those in need to services available, reaching 16.8million people in Pakistan.
IMPROVED ACCESS: Through this programme, 1.5 million people have been actively supported by attending mental health awareness raising sessions, accessing support through helplines and engagement with the Community-Focussed OutReach campaign.
IMPROVED PROVISION: And ultimately over the three years, the programme has provided mental health support services to 95,941 individuals at clinical and non-clinical levels, including support groups and forums; 1-2-1 support from professionals and remote support for children and adolescents. The British Asian Trust and its partners have also trained 1,988 practitioners to identify, refer, and support people on mental health.
The Foundation provided more than a grant. In the set-up of the programme, the British Asian Trust report that the organisational support received by CareTech plc was crucial from providing technical support, with Helen Stokes, MD and Dr Alice Parshall, Head Psychiatrist, both from Specialist Services in CareTech plc, visiting the programme in Pakistan, sharing their expertise with our Pakistani partner charities on mental health, and attending the British High Commission event, bringing together experts across Pakistan to discuss mental health in Karachi. In addition., CareTech Foundation also helped BAT leverage funding, matching the £230,000 raised at BAT’s gala dinner with the Pakistan Cricket Team entitled ‘Hit Mental Health for Six’.
In the final months of the project, ensuring the long-term sustainability of the programme was a priority. BAT worked with partners to ensure that the newly integrated mental health services are fully embedded within their existing service offering. As a result, mental health services will continue to be available through 37 clinics and healthcare facilities throughout the country.
In this way, the project leaves a lasting legacy, influencing the wider mental health eco-system in Pakistan, with improvements in availability, accessibility and quality of services, and greater investment in mental health nationally.
“We are incredibly grateful to the CareTech Foundation & COSARAF Charitable Foundation for the generous initial funding which catalysed the whole programme.” Richard Hawkes, British Asian Trust