What We Stand For
The MHPSS Collaborative is a global platform for research, innovation, learning and advocacy. In the field of Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS), we connect key academic and humanitarian actors with local civil society to give children and families in fragile circumstances the possibility to thrive.
The MHPSS Collaborative was born out of a response to a growing body of research on the impacts of Children’s exposure globally to unprecedented rates of violence, abuse, exploitation and neglect, particularly those in crisis, migration and displacement situations. Exposure to critical incidents and long-term adversity, and the failure of adequate child protection and nurturance, leads to devastating impacts on children’s physical and mental development, their potential to actively engage in the building of inclusive, peaceful societies, and the socio-economic development and stability of communities as a whole.
Investing in resilience-building and Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) for children, youth and families in fragile and humanitarian contexts is a critical precondition for sustainable development that leaves no one behind.
The MHPSS Collaborative works across the sector to:
- Convene and facilitate partnerships to engage a broad range of stakeholders
- Develop and share knowledge, and advance local-to-global research
- Advocate toward donors and decision-makers for MHPSS as a life-saving measure
We focus on emerging challenges that require immediate attention for children and families in adversity:
- Education in emergencies and the importance of integrating MHPSS
- Migration and displacement: cross border care for children and families on the move
- Climate change and the cycle of impact on children’s mental health and psychosocial wellbeing
- Suicide prevention in humanitarian settings
The voices of children and families matter
Meaningful partnerships are essential
Local and global knowledge and experience must come together
Leslie Snider MD, MPH
Director, MHPSS Collaborative
Leslie is a psychiatrist and public health professional with over 20 years’ experience in MHPSS programmes and research in diverse global settings. She began as a public mental health clinician while directing International Mental Health and Medical Anthropology Studies for ten years at Tulane Public Health School. She has worked with UN agencies, governments and NGOs in quality MHPSS care for children and families affected by disasters, conflict, HIV/AIDS, poverty and exploitation, and has developed several widely used international resources for MHPSS in emergencies. She most enjoyed writing a small children’s book for children and caregivers affected by the Ebola crisis.
Carmen Valle, Ph.d
Senior MHPSS Advisor, MHPSS Collaborative
Dr Carmen Valle-Trabadelo is a psychologist with 15 years’ experience in mental health. Carmen worked 9 years in academia and research, and from 2009 combined it with clinical work and services management. In 2011, after several collaborations with universities in LMIC countries, she transitioned to development and humanitarian work. Since then, she has worked for NGOs and UN agencies providing technical support and advice in 15 countries across Africa, Asia and Latin America, with a strong focus on Human Rights, Systems Strengthening, and Psychological Interventions.
MHPSS Technical Advisor, MHPSS Collaborative
Dr Ashley Nemiro has worked as a global mental health professional in humanitarian settings since 2011 following a career as a licensed family therapist and refugee resettlement program coordinator. She received her doctorate from North Carolina State University where she spent three years travelling to eastern Democratic Republic of Congo to conduct her dissertation research and run a non-profit alongside Congolese women. Ashley focuses on integrating mental health care into health, education and protection services, developing supervision systems and training and supporting staff on the use of psychological interventions for children and adults across Africa, the Middle East and Europe.
Coordinator and Support Officer, MHPSS Collaborative
Caroline Stavnsbjerg holds a master in International Development Studies and Cultural Encounters Studies from Roskilde University (RUC). She has seven years of experience within all aspects of project management and proposal writing, accumulated through work within various consultancy agencies. Caroline has primarily worked with EU as well as Danida funded projects within the African continent and has mainly worked with projects related to governance issues.
Ellen R. Pucke
Ellen Pucke is a social worker and project manager from the fields of community mental healthcare and psychosocial services for refugees. Her role with the MHPSS Collaborative is to oversee our projects portfolio as well as communications.
Research Advisor, Climate Change and Youth Engagement
Dr. Jura Augustinavicius is a global mental health researcher and an Assistant Scientist in the Department of Mental Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health where she teaches courses on Climate Change and Mental Health. She completed a doctorate and postdoctoral fellowship in Public Mental Health with special training in global mental health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Her current work focuses on climate change and mental health, youth engagement, and MHPSS in humanitarian settings.
Our steering committee
World Health Organization
Resilience Research Centre
War Child Holland; Kings College London
IFRC Reference Centre for Psychosocial Support
Save the Children Denmark
Royal Free and University College Medical School, London; and Editor, Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies
We are hosted and funded by
The MHPSS Collaborative is hosted by Save the Children, sharing a location in its offices in Copenhagen, Denmark. We are grateful to Danida for providing the seed funding for our core activities and existence. Danida is Denmark’s development cooperation, an area of activity under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark.
We are proud to work with
Working in partnership is one of our core values. We are proud to have current and past partnerships with these outstanding entities, working together to solve critical issues for child and family mental health and psychosocial wellbeing.
The story behind the logo
Bringing people together for children and families. Together, we can ensure children’s ability to grow, learn and develop to their full potential. And reach for a life in peace, love and safe environment. As any child deserve.