Managing the mental health of children and young people

RDC RA 2022

Managing the mental health of children and young people

Résaux sociaux

As the academic year draws to a close, we share with you some of the results and successes achieved on the ground by our teams and partners in 2022. During this period, the successful launch of our new 2022-2026 development programme has been at the centre of our concerns, in our desire to relentlessly pursue the construction of a sustainable, equitable and united world.

The theme of non-communicable diseases encompasses in particular our work to improve care for mental health. As part of this, in 2022, Louvain Coopération launched an innovative approach to psychosocial support for children in street situations in Kinshasa, via the recruitment of a Kinshasa-based volunteer psychologist, Stéphanie Mbelu, who supports our local partners. She explains her role to us.

The volunteer psychologist is responsible for improving the quality of psychosocial work in the centres.
She works with children, psychologists, psychosocial assistants and socio-educational teams.

The latter are subject to intense stress. The volunteer psychologist therefore offers them individual psychological support (care for caregivers, the importance of which we saw in Belgium during the Covid-19 crisis). She also advises the psychologists on the cases they encounter and on therapeutic techniques. Stéphanie also provides the teams with tools for managing stress, anger and even educational sanctions. She also takes part in educational meetings.

This presence helps to improve the children's psychological well-being and strengthens the protection of their rights. In addition, the teams are more attentive to understanding the emotions, problematic behaviour and experiences of the children. Their overall care is enhanced, as is communication within the teams.

MNT In 2022, 674 street children and young people benefited from medico-psychosocial services.

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