Rahab was confined and chained for more than 10 years in rural Uganda. With treatment provided by trained psychiatric staff supported by Jamie’s Fund, she is returning to a normal life. There are many more like Rahab.
Jamie’s Fund is a UK Charity established in 2013 in memory of Jamie Devaney who died aged four. To read Jamie’s story click here.
Working with private not-for-profit (PNFP) hospitals in Uganda, we enable them to deliver mental healthcare, with particular emphasis on taking services out into their communities.
These, generally faith-based, hospitals provide critical services in low income countries like Uganda. The government health services often struggle to meet health needs especially of those with severe and enduring mental ill health (such as psychosis, bipolar disorder and severe depression) and epilepsy.
Estimates suggest that up to 90% of those with a mental illness struggle to get effective treatment. Non-government hospitals and health centres often play a vital role in filling the gaps. But even so there are many people who remain shackled or locked up at home, as relatives don’t know what else to do.
From an initial base of three hospitals in the rural south west of Uganda, we have expanded to work with 27 hospitals across the whole country.
When we are invited by hospitals, we work with them to develop cost-effective mental health care within the hospital and the local community.
We do this by:
- funding training of general-trained clinicians in the hospital and related health centres to diagnose and treat mental illness. This training uses material developed by the World Health Organisation.
- sponsoring clinicians to train as psychiatric clinical officers from hospitals that have no one trained to this level in psychiatry.
- organising annual professional development workshops for all staff working in mental health.
- funding some of the cost of providing services in the community.
As a result of our work, we have seen a significant increase in the understanding of mental illness across most of the 27 hospitals. This has allowed many patients to be treated in their own community without the challenge and cost of monthly visits to hospital out-patient clinics. If you would like to read more about our method of working, click here
How you could help?
If you would like to help us transform lives in Uganda, please consider whether you could make a regular donation, large or small, to Jamie’s Fund. Could you remember us in your will, leaving a legacy of hope in the despair of hidden mental ill health? Are you a business or other organisation that could sponsor parts of our work?
If you are able to support this life-changing work or would like more information, please e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or, to make a one-off donation, click here.