BasicNeeds-Ghana is a mental health and development advocacy organisation that implements and promotes initiatives to transform the lives of people with mental illness or epilepsy by providing access to integrated mental health care, social and economic services in the communities of Ghana. In the process, we empower these individuals and their families, while involving communities, other organisations and the government at large in a bid to influence public opinion and shape policy which would enable people with mental illness or epilepsy live and work successfully in their respective communities.

Our vision
The vision of BasicNeeds-Ghana is that “People with mental illness or epilepsy live in dignity and satisfy their basic needs and exercise their basic rights”.

Our Mission
BasicNeeds-Ghana’s mission is “to develop and implement initiatives that directly involve people with mental illness or epilepsy, and their families and communities and other  organisations to enhance self-determination and influence public opinion and decision-making on mental health and development”.

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We are committed as a Mental Health and Development Advocacy organisation, to see to it that Government passes the Legislative Instrument on the mental health Act which will make its implementation effective. By way of committing resources for the mental healthcare services in the country as the L.I would have a mental health fund readily available for such efforts?

We also want to see that, there is a total closure of all witches camps in the country to end violations of human rights of persons with mental illnesses and vulnerable populations in general. Economic Empowerment of persons with mental illnesses and epilepsy and other vulnerable populations will also help to reduce stigma and discrimination. 

As a mental health and development advocacy organization, we are working closely with prayer camps to end the dehumanizing conditions that Persons with mental illness or epilepsy are often subjected to. In this process, payer camps handlers and traditional healers have their capacities built by BasicNeeds-Ghana and they are now making referrals of mental health conditions brought to their attention to the various psychiatric units for further examination and treatment.

Timeframe and/or implementation plan: Passage of the Legislative Instrument on the mental health Act by December, 2018.This act when passage should also include an indication of the source of funding to the mental health fund. Total closure of Witches and Prayer camps (that violates the rights of persons with mental illnesses) in the Country, by  December, 2018.Governmnet commitment to increasing budgetary allocations to vulnerable groups through the local assemblies for their economic empowerment activities by March, 2019.Activities that will be undertaken to     achieve this include: Engagement with various duty bearers  including the Parliamentary select Committee on health of the parliament of Ghana on the need for the passage of the LI on the mental health act, the Ministry of Finance, Local assemblies, economic empowerment trainings to Vulnerable populations etc. 

Theme: Eliminate Stigma and Discrimination
Year: 2018

Government Commitment towards inclusive education should include building the capacity of Teachers other than educational Staff to be able to handle student/pupil’s with Special needs such as children with epilepsy, special attention, attention deficit disorders, and those with common mental disorders such as depressions in schools.We expect Government to commit through the relevant agencies to provide in-service trainings to Teachers and Educational Staff on issues of disability. Through the relevant agencies of Government, we expect increased in awareness creation on inclusive educations by way of helping parents and people with disabilities have access to education. Government should also ensure that schools are disability friendly so as to accommodate all categories of people. Government should empower Special Education Development (SPED) Coordinators, School Health Education Programme (SHEP) Coordinators and Guidance and Counselling Coordinators so that they would continue to support children with disabilities in their studies. Government should also work towards Making Special education part and parcel of the GES curriculum. Government should continue to liase with non-state actors working in areas of disability  to effectively sensitize the populace on disability issues so as to disabuse their minds towards their conditions. This would also contribute to efforts of reducing stigma and discrimination.

Timeframe and/or implementation plan: December, 2019. Activitieswill include our engagement with government through the Ministry of Education and Ghana health Service, our engagement with the local authorities and the general public through drummer and Durbars to increase awareness. We shall also form partnerships with the Media to promote awareness creation jingles and adverts on inclusive education.      

Theme: Inclusive Education
Year: 2018

We would be happy to see government commitment towards skills development of persons with disabilities for decent works. In Ghana, many people living with disabilities have potentials which are untapped. A commitment by government towards providing skills for them through appropriate agencies such as the National board for Small Scale Initiatives will help increase their earning and provide them with decent work.In addition, Government commitment to setting up centres/ halfway homes in all District Assemblies across Ghana to serve as centres for persons with disabilities to use as their training and working centres in the will be appropriate. We also expect government to readily commit resources towards executing its social intervention for persons with disabilities by Committing resources to PWDS through the 3% District Assembly Common Fund and the LEAP programme to economically empower persons with disabilities.

Timeframe and/or implementation plan: By December, 2019. Activities: regular monitoring of the quarterly Disbursements and Usage of the 3% District Assembly common fund to persons with disabilities. Engagement with the District Level Social Welfare and community development offices in all districts in the country           

Theme: Routes to Economic Empowerment
Year: 2018

Join Global Partnership for Assistive Technology.

Timeframe and/or implementation plan: December, 2019: Activitiesinclude engagement with relevant governmental bodies, advocate for tax exemptions on assistive technology to make their importation cheaper. 

Theme: Harnessing Technology and Innovation
Year: 2018

Commit resources towards strengthening of relevant agencies such as the Department of Social welfare and community development and the Statistical services to employ new technology towards gathering accurate data on disability in the country.Equip the District Health Information Management Information System (DHIMS) with the requisite expertise so as to be able to make available disaggregated data on disability conditions for better planning and management.

Timeframe and/or implementation plan: December, 2019. Activities include training of relevant data staff on disability issues, and advocate for the adoption of appropriate questionnaire such as the Washington group of questions into the local context by government agencies.

Theme: Data Disaggregation
Year: 2018

Government commitment towards the passage of the LI on the mental health Act (846), Amendment of aspect of the Affirmative action bill to include people with disability. Increase awareness creation programs on disability issues towards the reduction of stigma and discrimination, facilitate the accessibility of assistive technology for people with disability as well as ensure economic empowerment for them. Government should also commit resources in working to end issues of torture among persons with disabilities who have sought asylum in the country. 

Timeframe and/or implementation plan: December, 2019: Activities will include engagement with relevant agencies, awareness creation activities targeting the general public and increase media activities. 

Theme: Conflict and Humanitarian Contexts
Year: 2018

Commitments towards regular financing mental healthcare.Strengthening the manpower base of the mental health staff to be able to provide quality mental healthcare for the citizens. Timely and regular release of funds through the District Assemblies Common Fund to support Persons with disabilities at the various districts and community level. Commit to coming out with policies and framework to end all form of violence or discrimination against persons with disabilities.

Theme: Other
Year: 2018