From Isolation to Inclusion in the Community

Rama Devi Kandel (pseudonym) is 46 years old and she lives in Majhadada-8, Kaski with her children. She is an independent woman who manages her home, take care of her children as well as works for the economic support in the family. But she was not independent like this before.

She got married when she was 21 years old. Her mother-in-law and father-in-law used to torture her for dowry. So after giving birth to two children she moved to separate house with her husband and children. She was living a happy life until her husband started drinking alcohol and abusing her and children. Moreover, she found out that her husband was having an affair with another woman which added stress on her life. She was very dishearten so she left her home and stayed in temple. She was there for almost a year.

She was then taken to a hospital in Pokhara for treatment from where she got referred to the mental health and psychosocial support OPD service at Damauli hospital. The OPD service is being provided by KOSHISH. She went to the OPD services for the first time on July 16, 2017. With the counseling services and medication, her mental health gradually improved.

With the help of KOSHISH, the first Self Help Group (SHG) for the persons with the experiences of mental health problems was established in Bhimad, Tanahun. She is one of the member from that self-help group. She shared that SHG has provided them a platform for sharing and practicing relaxation and therapeutic activities. It has made them capable to reach out more people and agencies with united voices of persons with mental health and psychosocial issues. The Self Help Group (SHG) members helped her to file a case against her husband for polygamy. She won the case and her husband had to provide Rs. 5000 every month to her as well as look after the necessities of the children.  With the gradual recovery, she had started working and now she is financially independent.  She looks after the need of her children. Both her children are studying at undergraduate level as well as working to support their mother. She is living a happy life with her children.

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