It was barely a month and already he was feeling the pressure from all ends . It took him nine months to land a job in a manufacturing company which was far from his dream job. What he earned was just a meager wage which did not equate with his dreams and aspirations. The sleepless nights and hard work in college hadn’t paid of as yet, if ever they were to. Him being the first born son in his family meant everything. Although both his aged parents and his prayers of getting a job were answered, it was the beginning of yet another nightmare. His parents and siblings looked up to him for survival, him living in a big city wasn’t easy with so many responsibilities. Although he tried to put on extra hours at work, it never seem to make any difference. College for him became a facade which masked impoverishment.
“If only I had listened…”
he constantly found himself thinking.
There is a serious mental health crisis in Zimbabwe. There is a real shortage of psychiatric institutions, psychotropic drugs and mental health specialists. The problem in Zimbabwe is that mental illness is a condition that is not taken seriously. With a population of approximately 14 million people there are about 14 psychiatrists countrywide.
The country has one child psychiatrist who is in the private sector.
Generally, there is lack of awareness about mental illness, and patients are routinely stigmatized. In most African societies mental patients are deemed mad or possessed.
The mental health of the people of Zimbabwe needs to be addressed in line with any health reform initiatives. Mental health is an important economic factor in any society, it is part of an individual’s capacity to live a fulfilling life; hence disturbance to an individual’s mental being has a detrimental effect.
An extract from my PhD Proposal