Mental Health Service Users Association (MHSUA)

Ethiopia | | View MHIN Profile

MHSUA is an association of people with severe mental disorders advocating for their voices to be taken into account in the design and implementation of mental health policy and services in Ethiopia.

What Others Can Learn

For user-led organisations, investing in support systems for the team is crucial to their long-term success. It creates the conditions for both the members and the organisation to thrive, rather than making them drained, re-traumatised or unsafe through their role of spokespeople.

Partnership With Ember

As an organisation of mental health service users, all of whom were working on the project voluntarily, the MHSUA team faced significant challenges in their own self-care. This put a lot of pressure on the team, particularly the leader, in a way that was not sustainable.

We provided wellbeing support to the team and a space to think more ambitiously about their long-term strategy for MHSUA to build a user-led organisation that truly works for its members.

Their ambition has grown as it became clear that their own wellbeing is the foundation of MHSUA’s future success on which their advocacy can build. They now have a model of support and empowerment designed around their members’ situations. As a result, the team are more engaged to their roles and the leader has decided to dedicate herself full time to the organisation, allowing her visionary leadership to emerge more fully.

Mental Health Service Users Association (MHSUA)