MHAT Introduction to Mental Health


Mental Health Action Trust (MHAT) is a Not-for-Profit focused on offering recovery-oriented outpatient mental health care to the poorest of the poor. For the past several years MHAT has been offering this service to the community across several districts of Kerala.  MHAT is registered as a charitable trust registered at the Institute of Palliative Medicine in Calicut, Kerala and was established in the year 2010. The founder and Clinical Director, Dr Manoj Kumar is an Ashoka Fellow.  MHAT offers an 8 Hour Synchronous Online Introduction Course in Mental Health



Aim of the Course:

This course aims to introduce you to the field of mental health so you can start recognizing mental health issues with individuals as well as mental health needs within communities. By the conclusion of this course, you should be able to do the following:

  1. Recognize some of the symptoms of mental disorders
  2. Respond reasonably to people experiencing symptoms of mental disorders
  3. Refer people experiencing possible mental disorders to appropriate services
  4. Offer Support in a basic way, to people with mental disorders and their families.
  5. Promote mental health awareness within your communities.

Please note, this course is not designed to prepare participants to be independent mental health practitioners – further training is required to achieve this goal.

Structure of the Course:

To offer flexibility to working professionals the program will be done over two consecutive weekends with four sessions of 2.5 hours each (there may be a change to this based on season and various other aspects). The course will introduce the participants to the fundamental concepts of mental health including the background and history of Psychiatry. The total duration of the program will be for 10 hours. Each day will consist of two sessions of about 40 minutes each with a 10-minute break. Each session has its objective and will consist of presentations by the facilitator as well as interactive discussions, activities that involve the group.

The session will introduce participants to fundamental concepts in mental health including background and history after which the concept and process of case history taking in mental health will be introduced.  The program will also touch upon common mental disorders including Bipolar Affective Disorder, Depression, Schizophrenia and anxiety disorders. And finally, the program will orient participants to the basic concepts employed in the medical and psychological management of mental disorders.

Each session will consist of presentations by the facilitator as well as interactive discussions and activities that involve the group. A proposed timetable for the training is provided below, however, this may be subject to slight alterations.  Since the program is spread over two weekends it will allow the participants to reflect, clarify and come back to the next session with well thought out questions that may benefit everyone in the program.

Who is the course for?

This training is designed for anyone interested in the field of mental health irrespective of their background. The course is also suitable for individuals who may know a friend or a loved one with a mental health issue and would like to understand more.  It can also be valuable to you if have in the past or are presently facing mental health issues. And finally, the course is also suitable for students as well as health workers and volunteers who would like to deepen their understanding of mental health

Number of Participants: The minimum number of participants expected is 20.

Who are your facilitators:

Your facilitators are psychiatrists and clinical psychologists with experience in helping clients facing mental health issues.

 Program Schedule:

Day Time Academic / Clinical Activity Facilitators
Day 1



9:00 am to 11:00 am Welcome and Introductions followed by History, Basic concepts Dr Manoj Kumar
11:00 am to 12:00 pm Case history taking &Mental status examination Sona K Narayanan
12:00 pm to 01:00 pm Mental Disorders I Dr Manoj kumar
Day 2



08:45 am to 09:45 am Mental Disorders III Dr Manu
11:00 am to 11:30 am Medical management & psychological management DR Manoj kumar
11:30 am to 12:00 am Role of Mental health workers Safiya or Ismail
12:00 pm to 01:00 pm Recovery oriented approach Ms Radhika Kidao
02:00 pm to 03:00 pm Mental disorders II Dr Favaz



MHAT welcomes a minimum contribution of Rs.1000/- for the whole course which serves to support our core mission of offering high quality, recovery-oriented mental health care for the poorest of the poor, totally free.



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