African mental health conference focusses on youth depression
Zimbabwean collaborators with the Centre for Global Mental Health convened the inaugural Annual Scientific Meeting for AMARI: the African Mental Health Research Initiative.
The conference took place at the Kingdom Hotel in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe on 22-23 March 2017.
Delegates attended from all AMARI partner countries: Ethiopia, Malawi, South Africa and Zimbabwe. CGMH staff from both London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and King’s College London also attended, including Prof Ricardo Araya, Dr Melanie Abas, Dr Lorna Gibson, Dr Chris Merritt, Dr Richard Harding and Dr Claire Henderson.
PhD and Post-Doc fellows from the AMARI project presented their research, while guests from Medecins Sans Frontieres discussed their work in Zimbabwe. The Zimbabwean Minister for Health and Child Care, Dr David Parirenyatwa, gave a speech to officially open the conference.
Further addresses by AMARI Director Dr Dixon Chibanda and Zimbabwean musician Tariro neGitare set out the mental health challenges faced by young people. These were put in context by service users who described their own experiences and recovery journeys from mental health difficulties beginning in adolescence.
The second AMARI Annual Scientific Meeting is scheduled to take place in Malawi in 2018.
Prior to the conference, all AMARI fellows attended a two-day workshop on leadership development, facilitated by Dr Chris Merritt of King’s College London. This combined mentoring training with skills for giving effective presentations.
Find out more about the AMARI project here.