Trained at NIMHANS, Bangalore, Monica founded Manas six years ago along with psychiatrist Amiya Banerjee, special educator Joyshree Mukherjee, and psychologists Mridula Apte and Naveen Kumar. Most of them are associated with VIMHANS, Delhi’s leading psychiatric hospital.
Besides doing clinical work among those who can’t afford treatment, the team now hopes to create greater public awareness about mental health. The thrust is increasingly on community and educational programmes. Last month, Manas organised a mental awareness week that included workshops, discussions, film screenings, theatre and an art exhibition in order to disseminate information about mental health. The idea, says Monica, is to sensitise the media and influence public policy. On November 29 it is organising a media awareness workshop in Delhi. It also hopes to screen short spots about mental health on private and public radio and television.