By: Friederike Bubenzer, Sarah van der Walt and Marian Tankink
Date of publication: 2017
Mapping global practice: Healing communities, transforming society
Mental health, psychosocial support and peacebuilding
Building on a long-term partnership aimed at exploring the intereconnectedness between psycho-social needs, practice and peacebuilding, the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation (South Africa) and the War Trauma Foundation (Netherlands) recently conducted an international mapping study. The purpose of the mapping, conducted via an online survey, was to ascertain the extent to which organisations around the world acknowledge the nexus between mental health and peacebuilding, and to establish whether and how they are integrating an awareness of the other fields’ components into their work.
75 respondents representing 62 different organisations from around the world participated in the survey. The participating organisations came from 25 different countries on 6 continents, ranging from large international non-governmental organisations (37%) to local (18%), regional (18%) and national organisations (27%).
One of the key findings from the survey was that 92% of respondents agreed that interventions aimed at building sustainable peace would benefit from an approach which connects PB and mental health. A further 68% stated that there is a need for more knowledge and information to operationalise this. More than half of respondents expressed a need for teaching materials to integrate into existing training materials and in-house training staff on how MHPSS and PB could be integrated. Other responses cited the need for more research to be conducted that reiterates how policy and practice link MHPSS and PB in a way that is accessible to experts, policy advisers and funders. For a detailed description of the results of the study and to read respondents comments, please read the full report.