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Rita (pseudonym) a resident of Byaas municipality was married in 1998 AD. Mrs. Rita went to school up to primary level and had to leave her study due to family problems. After seven years of happy married life, her husband started drinking heavily and developed a habit which changed the dynamics of their relationship. After continuous drinking, her husband developed a psychosocial problem that lead to the family responsibilities landing on her. After some time of dealing with these burdens, she started to develop an anxiety disorder, followed by depression. What alarmed her the most was, she knew about the prevalence of psychosocial issues in her family, as many of them were already under medication.
After several treatment attempts in Pokhara the financial burden and the inability of completing daily chores and taking care of her kids began to take tool on her, and her family. One day, the team from KOSHISH came to her neighborhood for an awareness program on mental health and psychosocial issues. Rita was one of the participants in the program, where for two days it focused on myths and realities on mental health issues, causes of mental health problems, the effect it has on relationships and treatment.
The community based mental health and psychosocial support program implemented by KOSHISH had a motto, to form a Self Help Group (SHG) of people living with MHPS issues. Rita is now a member of the SHG and attends meetings monthly. The meeting has been used as a platform to discuss the mental health issues, changes obtained and rights of persons with psychosocial disability. The SHG and its monthly meetings as well as the savings collected, has changed the perception of community people towards people living with MHPS issues.
After witnessing the changes in Rita, her neighbor Mr. Jiwanraj Ghimire said, “We are extremely happy to see changes in her, before her treatment we never dreamed she would be able to manage her household chores smoothly again.” Rita’s son added, “We had lots of trouble with our mother’s treatment, as our family was neglected and ignored. After KOSHISH’s intervention she is able to do everything on her own. We got our mother back.”