Playing to Live (PTL) in collaboration with the Danish Refugee Council (DRC) and TPO- Uganda sought to create a comprehensive report to highlight the immense need for mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) for children and adolescents in Uganda’s refugee settlements hosting South Sudanese refugees. Through the financial support of a grant from the Humanitarian Innovation Fund (HIF)/ELHRA and PTL donors, the following activities were successfully completed: background review, literature review, and needs and resource assessment. The activities were performed from March 1, 2017- October 31, 2017. During this time, PTL sought continual conversations and support from Uganda’s Office of Prime Minister (OPM) and UNHCR. Key stakeholders across for-profit, non-profit, and governmental organizations acted as advisors throughout this process. In addition, all collaborating organizations mentioned in this report provided essential information about their MHPSS services and recommendations for future growth. Transcultural Psychosocial Organization (TPO) Uganda provided additional support through validating the final information in the needs and resource assessment. The background review is a comprehensive review based on published literature of South Sudan’s culture and history. It provides insight into the role of religion, gender, and health. Insight into the cultural understanding and roles of mental health is also explored. Based on this information and additional literature, a review of the need and impact of mental health is stated. The literature review in this report highlights best practices, barriers, and outcomes for MHPSS child and adolescent programming in refugee/internally displaced persons (IDP) settings using paraprofessionals. The literature review was performed by three independent reviewers, began with 4,584 articles, and after three stages of inclusion criteria, 28 articles were included for the review. The 28 articles were reviewed, compared and contrasted, and rated for quality. This complete literature review can be used as a foundation to advocate for effective and sustainable programs. The needs and resource assessment used the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) rapid MHPSS needs assessment guidelines to perform an assessment on four of Uganda’s largest refugee settlements. This report contains the qualitative interviews, the methods followed, and the results from this assessment. Conclusions and recommendations pull together the background, literature review, and needs and resource assessment to highlight the urgent need for MHPSS programs for children and adolescents. Recommendations highlight the need for services on all levels of MHPSS response and describe how PTL could be an effective model to build capacity and support.
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