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Rebecca Anderson's Fundraiser:

Child Mental Health in Tanzania

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Rebecca Anderson


This fundraiser will help me make the trip to Moshi, Tanzania, where I will work on training local leaders in the basics of mental health care. Additionally, my group will deliver funds, clothing, and medical supplies to school, orphanages, and hospitals.

Any additional funds beyond my travel costs will be donated to build a secondary school for the students of St. Francis. St. Francis serves children who are blind, hearing impaired, cognitively impaired, or albino and cannot have their educational needs met in government or other religious schools. Moreover, these children are generally looked down on by much of the Tanzanian community and are sometimes the object of hostility. In fact, the location of St. Francis is purposely hidden to provide protection for these students. Unfortunately, not every child escapes harm before coming to the school. One young girl there is was missing both of her arms. The head teacher said, "A man from her village came in [the middle of the night] and chopped them off simply because she was albino."

Your donation will help add a secondary school onto St. Francis, which would allow these special needs students to continue their education there after graduating from the primary school.

Further information on mental health training:

The National Board of Certified Counselors, International Division (NBCC-I) has developed the Mental Health Facilitator (MHF) program, a dynamic 30 hour curriculum, to help address the demonstrated need for community based mental health training that can be adapted to reflect the social, cultural, economic, and political realities of any nation or region where there is a lack of mental health services. The goal of this program is to improve access to mental health care by educating and training local people (e.g., teachers, priests, nuns or other clergy, nurses, and business operators) in the basics of mental health care. The intent is to provide individuals with basic skills necessary to identify mental health needs, make referrals, and work with and support people in their villages who are in need of mental health services. In some low income countries, such as Tanzania, there are few social services in large cities and none in the more rural areas where most of the people are located.

This lack of social services is almost impossible to comprehend for those of us living in the United States where we have many resources available to people in need. Imagine a country where the people have no help whatsoever from the government and no money to develop such resources. The average person in Tanzania lives on less than $1 per day, so their basic needs are barely met. The concept of improving mental health is not a high priority when the need for food and water is paramount.



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Rebecca is working on selecting a charity so you can support Child Mental Health in Tanzania.