Two Facebook groups help around 27,000 women with issues related to mental health
Kamrun Nahar Koly, an assistant scientist at icddr,b raises awareness about mental health among women through two Facebook groups.
The groups, named Women for Each Other and Women Support Initiative Forum (WSIF), work closely with 27,000 women on the social media platform to help them with issues related to mental health.
Kamrun created WISF in 2018 with the aim of supporting women with mental health issues through raising awareness, consultations, and aiding them in getting professional help.
"When I established WSIF, I realised that there are many opportunities through which I can do something for the society – particularly for vulnerable groups such as women," Kamrun
"I chose Facebook as the platform to provide mental health education as this is the easiest way to reach so many people together. Though women are busy with their daily household
chores, work and raising their families, they are still very active on Facebook."
The other group, Women for Each Other, helps its members with mental health issues through direct communication online.
Thirty volunteering doctors known as Psychosocial Supporters are constantly moderating the group and have one-to-one communication with the women on Facebook.
Women with mental health issues are identified early by assessing their posts in the Facebook group and the supporters directly contact them via Facebook Messenger.
Upon the determining the seriousness of the issue, the mental health professionals aid the women in getting professional help from suitable doctors from a network of experts who provide mental health care in Bangladesh.
Besides their online activities, they actively curate regular workshops conducted by expert psychologists and psychiatrists. So far, the group has conducted 22 sessions with 2,000 participants.
They also broadcast the workshops via Facebook live so that women sitting at home can also participate.