Presenter Information

Christopher L. MorucciFollow

Presentation Type

Poster

Abstract

Many forms of educational outreach programs today are directed towards disease prevention and physical health. However, there is a troubling disparity with programs that exist to focus specifically on mental health. Mental health care and systemic intervention are an increasing necessity as the World Health Organization has declared depression the leading cause of disability worldwide. Though not the only precipitating factor, depression and other forms of mental disorder are often seen in cases of completed suicide. The South American country Guyana is of specific interest in the implementation of mental health interventions as it currently faces the highest suicide rates in the world. This proposal examines culturally relevant arts-based interventions that have been previously created and used to address HIV and AIDS in African populations. These interventions were chosen due to the specific cultural relevance of using the arts as a medium for change in South America, something that has been previously expressed through the development Theatre of the Oppressed. Adapting these models, an arts-based intervention has been developed to focus on educating members of the Guyana population on mental health and potential practices for increasing well-being. As it is a cross-cultural proposal, historical and cultural information about Guyana is reviewed to provide context for the intervention. Approaching this project with cultural humility, steps to collaborate and use this program in Guyana are of primary consideration. The main objectives of the project are to: (1) increase mental health literacy throughout Guyana, (2) encourage positive practices related to mental health and general well-being, and (3) reduce the rate of suicide amongst the Guyanese population.

Category

Social Sciences

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Apr 28th, 3:00 PM Apr 28th, 4:00 PM

The Adaptation of a Culturally Relevant Arts-Based Mental Health Intervention for the People of Guyana

UC South Ballroom

Many forms of educational outreach programs today are directed towards disease prevention and physical health. However, there is a troubling disparity with programs that exist to focus specifically on mental health. Mental health care and systemic intervention are an increasing necessity as the World Health Organization has declared depression the leading cause of disability worldwide. Though not the only precipitating factor, depression and other forms of mental disorder are often seen in cases of completed suicide. The South American country Guyana is of specific interest in the implementation of mental health interventions as it currently faces the highest suicide rates in the world. This proposal examines culturally relevant arts-based interventions that have been previously created and used to address HIV and AIDS in African populations. These interventions were chosen due to the specific cultural relevance of using the arts as a medium for change in South America, something that has been previously expressed through the development Theatre of the Oppressed. Adapting these models, an arts-based intervention has been developed to focus on educating members of the Guyana population on mental health and potential practices for increasing well-being. As it is a cross-cultural proposal, historical and cultural information about Guyana is reviewed to provide context for the intervention. Approaching this project with cultural humility, steps to collaborate and use this program in Guyana are of primary consideration. The main objectives of the project are to: (1) increase mental health literacy throughout Guyana, (2) encourage positive practices related to mental health and general well-being, and (3) reduce the rate of suicide amongst the Guyanese population.