Mental Health in Haiti: Freeing the Mind From Bondage

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By Guerda Nicolas
CJ Contributor

IT IS BECOMING CLEARER to everyone that in order for individuals as well as groups of individuals to thrive that a good mental state is necessary.

That became even more apparent to Haitians in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake during which many saw the importance of addressing the mental well-being of Haitians in Haiti and throughout the diaspora as a priority for rebuilding the country and its people.

Thus mental well-being is no longer something that is needed just for the privileged, but for all.  Although many organizations responded to the abundant needs of the people in Haiti, such services have diminished significantly three years post the quake.

However, two organizations, led by Haitian mental health professionals are committed to keeping mental well-being of Haitians at the for front of the discourse:  The Boston Haitian Mental Health Network and Rebati Sante Mentale in Miami.

These organizations are hosting international conferences in May and June, respectively, aim at developing culturally effective methods for addressing mental health issues among Haitians.  These are events not be missed.

Bamboo:
 Rethinking the Concept of “Resilience” in the Haitian Community

May 3-4, 2013

Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology

One Wells Avenue
Newton, Massachusetts

Insert from their website — as a nation, Haitians have often been compared to the bamboo tree, which has the distinct characteristic of weathering strong storms and winds seemingly unscathed. Since the disaster of January 12, 2010, the term “resilience” has frequently been associated with Haitians.

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