Bro. René Stockman, President of Fracarita International, visited the Burundian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and the National Institute of Public Health. The discussion focused on the mental health problematic in Burundi. Read more about the possible solutions.
The Superior General of the Brothers of Charity and President of Fracarita International, Bro. Dr René Stockman, the Regional Superior of the Saint-Francois-Xavier Region (Burundi and Rwanda) and the General Director of the Neuro-Psychiatric Centre of Kamenge (very well known as CNPK in Burundi) visited the Burundian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation on March 8th, 2016. They were welcomed by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry.
Their discussion focused on the mental health problematic in Burundi and on the possibility of creating a synergy for potential interventions especially in the decentralization and the integration of mental health care in the primary care. The Director of the Diaspora Office, one of the departments of the Burundian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, also joined the discussion.
After this visit, Fracarita International’s delegation visited the National Institute of Public Health (NIPH), together with a delegate of the International Organisation for Migration (IOM). They met the General Director who welcomed the progress of a study programme in mental health and psychiatry, which was initiated by the CNPK in 2013.
The CNPK has always been dreaming of creating a mental health study programme in collaboration with a Burundian University. The dream became reality in 2013, thanks to the synergy cooperation of the Diaspora Office, the IOM, the NIPH and the CNPK. The three-year study programme started on 19 August 2013 at the NIPH and will lead to a bachelor degree. The IOM and the Diaspora Office are in charge of sending experts from the Burundian diaspora and didactic material, whereas the CNPK supervises internships and assists in the search of teachers. The NIPH is responsible for the organisation and the management of the study programme. The first students will graduate at the end of this year.
Note that Burundi has now only two psychiatrists and two psychiatric nurses for a population of 11,178,921 inhabitants (2015’s estimate).
Fracarita International and Fracarita Belgium assist the CNPK in Bujumbura (in the centre) and its branches in Gitega (in the Ouest) and Ngozi (in the North) to improve the quality of life of mentally ill people in Burundi.