Mental Health Project

Overview: In collaboration with REACH Trust, our project is a pioneering initiative addressing the critical gaps in youth mental health in Malawi. Focused on an equity lens, we aim to comprehensively understand, manage, and respond to mental health challenges faced by young people aged 15–24.

Context: Malawi’s youth encounter a spectrum of mental health issues exacerbated by substance use, cultural stigma, and the aftermath of COVID-19. The lack of awareness and inadequate access to mental health services intensify the struggle, particularly in rural areas where most of the youth reside.

Unique Approach: Our project adopts a multisectoral strategy, integrating primary health care with psychoeducation, social support, and online resources. Recognizing the importance of community and peer networks, we aim to map existing sources of support in urban and rural areas to develop targeted interventions.


  • Data Collection: Obtain comprehensive information on the distribution and determinants of youth mental health challenges through literature review and key informant interviews/focus groups.
  • Community Mapping: Assess existing support sources in selected urban and rural areas to counsel, manage, and address mental health problems among youth aged 15 to 24 in Malawi.
  • Alignment Assessment: Determine the alignment and identify gaps in current mental health responses and interventions concerning the mental health needs of Malawi’s youth, with a focus on equity issues.
  • Recommendations: Utilize findings to recommend targeted interventions for mental health prevention, detection, counseling, care, and wider responses for youth aged 15 to 24 in Malawi.

Impact: By addressing the unique challenges faced by Malawi’s youth, our initiative strives to contribute to a holistic, culturally sensitive, and equitable mental health support system. Together with REACH Trust, we are committed to fostering a resilient and empowered young generation.