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Conversations for Social Change

The Centre for Global Citizenship Education & Inclusion and Centennial Libraries host, "Conversations for Social Change", a series of talks with guest speakers and discussion of social justice issues.

CSC Oct. 30, 2019

Mental Health Without Borders

Wednesday October 30th 2019 – 6:00 PM – 8:00PM

Fireside Gallery, Progress Campus


Join us during Thrive Week for a screening of Kiskadee’s Shadow, a documentary exploring mental health in Guyana. The film will be followed by a dynamic discussion about the global factors underlying mental health issues, the connections between mental health in Guyana and diverse communities in Canada and innovative approaches to addressing mental health concerns.


Guest speakers include:


Articles (e-format)

Collins, P. Y., Patel, V., Joestl, S. S., March, D., Insel, T. R., Daar, A. S., . . . Scientific Advisory Board and the Executive Committee of the Grand Challenges on Global Mental Health. (2011). Grand challenges in global mental health. Nature, 475(7354), 27-30. doi:10.1038/475027a

[...] the effort hopes to build a wide-ranging community of research funders - much as the challenge for non-communicable diseases led to the creation of the GACD. [...] the challenges underline the fact that all care and treatment interventions - psychosocial or pharmacological, simple or complex - should have an evidence base to provide programme planners, clinicians and policy-makers with effective care packages.


Milev, R. (2015). Global mental health. Canadian Journal of Psychiatry. Revue Canadienne De Psychiatrie, 60(7), 336-337.

Section 3 is devoted to the "Systems of Development," looking at some of the challenges of human resources in low- and middle-income countries, integration of mental health services into primary care settings, collaboration between traditional and Western practitioners, and also a few examples of setting up integrated mental health systems around the world. Section 4 examines "Systems of Development for Special Populations," including maternal mental health, screening for developmental disabilities, child services, including child abuse and child soldiers, and adolescent alcohol and substance abuse.


Prince, M., Patel, V., Saxena, S., & Maj, M. (2007). Global mental health 1: No health without mental health. The Lancet, 370(9590), 859.

About 14% of the global burden of disease has been attributed to neuropsychiatric disorders, mostly due to the chronically disabling nature of depression and other common mental disorders, alcohol-use and substance-use disorders, and psychoses. Such estimates have drawn attention to the importance of mental disorders for public health. However, because they stress the separate contributions of mental and physical disorders to disability and mortality, they might have entrenched the alienation of mental health from mainstream efforts to improve health and reduce poverty. The burden of mental disorders is likely to have been underestimated because of inadequate appreciation of the connectedness between mental illness and other health conditions. Because these interactions are protean, there can be no health without mental health. Mental disorders increase risk for communicable and non-communicable diseases, and contribute to unintentional and intentional injury. Conversely, many health conditions increase the risk for mental disorder, and comorbidity complicates help-seeking, diagnosis, and treatment, and influences prognosis.


Verdeli, H. (2016). Global mental health: An introduction. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 72(8), 761-765. doi:10.1002/jclp.22357

In this introductory paper to the Global Mental Health volume, the inception and development of the filed in the last 15 years is reviewed, placing an emphasis on a series of pivotal turning points. A critical delivery strategy, task-shifting is briefly described, as well as the fundamental principles of Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT), an evidence-based psychotherapy being adapted and delivered in low-resource settings. Nine case studies by the trainees, supervisors, or local providers from India, the United States, Haiti, Israel, Colombia, and Kenya, presented in this volume, illustrate the prevention and treatment processes or in-depth assessment of “psychological distress” as locally defined and expressed.


Books (e-format)

Thornicroft, G., Ruggeri, M., Goldberg, D. P., & ProQuest (Firm). (2013). Improving mental health care: The global challenge (1st ed.). Chichester, West Sussex, U.K: Wiley-Blackwell.

Written by many of the world's leading practitioners in the delivery of mental health care, this book clearly presents the results of scientific research about care and treatment for people with mental illness in community settings. The book presents clear accounts of what is known, extensively referenced, with critical appraisals of the strength of the evidence and the robustness of the conclusions that can be drawn. Improving Mental Health Care adds to our knowledge of the challenge and the solutions and stands to make a significant contribution to global mental health.


Morrow, M., & Malcoe, L., Halinka. (2017). Critical inquiries for social justice in mental health. Toronto: University Of Toronto Press - M.U.A.

An exceptional showcase of interdisciplinary research, Critical Inquiries for Social Justice in Mental Health presents various critical theories, methodologies, and methods for transforming mental health research and fostering socially-just mental health practices. Marina Morrow and Lorraine Halinka Malcoe have assembled an array of international scholars, activists, and practitioners whose work exposes and disrupts the dominant neoliberal and individualist practices found in contemporary mental research, policy, and practice. The contributors employ a variety of methodologies including intersectional, decolonizing, indigenous, feminist, post-structural, transgender, queer, and critical realist approaches in order to interrogate the manifestation of power relations in mental health systems and its impact on people with mental distress. 


Books (print)

Mills, C. (2014). Decolonizing global mental health: The psychiatrization of the majority world. London; New York: Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group.

On the shelf, RA790.5 .M56 2014, Centennial – Ashtonbee

Decolonizing Global Mental Health offers a critical postcolonial reading of this newly emerging arena, with a particular focus on psychology's and psychiatry's encounters with, and responses to, distress or 'mental illness' in low-income countries. The World Health Organisation and the Movement for Global Mental Health currently push for the 'scale-up' of psychiatric and psychological interventions on to low-income countries, modelled on those from high-income countries. However critiques of psychiatric and psychological services from service users, the survivor movement and professionals, often remain invisible within 'Global Mental Health' literature. This book argues that it is imperative to explore how this alternative 'evidence base' might be mobilized to fruitfully interrogate calls to 'scale up' psychiatric and psychological services in the majority world.

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