December 10, 2017
MS Chellamuthu Trust and Research Foundation (MSCT&RF), the well known Madurai-based mental health services provider, won the Parivartan Award for best practices in mental health. Parivartan,an NGOwhich is closely associated with Department of Psychiatry, Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Chandigarh, worksfor the welfare of persons with mental illness, their families and caregiversfrom 2008. Parivartan organised the first national conference on “Support for caregivers and persons with mental illness: An innovative approach” on December 9-10, 2017, at Chandigarh. The conference was jointly organised with the Dept. of Psychiatry, GMCH & supported by Indian Association of Social Psychiatry and Society of Rural Mental Health on the theme “Support for Caregivers and Person with Mental Illness: Innovative Approaches.” The focus was on non-pharmacological interventions for the rehabilitation of persons with mental illness. The approaches included service delivery, community outreach program, vocational training, social skills training, job placements, use of information technology for empowering service users, legal assistance, shelter for homeless mentally ill patients, crisis intervention, home based services etc. The scientific programme included symposia, workshop,awardpapers in poster form, free papers and invited guest lectures. A special section—the awards section—included s six categories of awards. Of these, the most important one is the“PRESTIGIOUS AWARD”conferred on the NGO with best practices in the field of mental health. Seven NGOs across the nation applied for this award, among which MSCT&RF won the prestigious award. KSP Janardhan Babu, Director Programmes, MSCT&RF, made a presentation on the best practices of the trust in the mental healthon the second day of the conference. Earlier, Dr.C.Ramasubramanian (Dr. CRS), Founder and Consultant Psychiatrist of the Trust, made a presentation on Appropriate Resource Utilization in setting up of Rehabilitation Services: ACTIVITIES, VENTURES AND OPPURTUNITIES, as part of the invited Guest Lectures category. Dr. CRS was also invited as Chairperson for “Families as Mental Health Advocates:Engaging the Unengagedthrough Day Care Services and “A Person Within”.Nearly 200 delegates participated from various NGOs, which included Mental Health Professionals and Care Givers. The sharing of experiences enriched participants knowledge and especially created directions for care givers and support group members to implement some of the best practices at their respective places in the near future. The award will certainly boost the morale of the staff of MSCT&RF and strengthen our conviction to work towards a mentally healthy society.