Mental Health in India Research

I have secured an internship in India addressing critical mental health issues at the community level, one of the most pressing, yet overlooked areas of public health. The internship is hosted at Sangath, one of India's leading research institutes, yet it is unpaid and I will work purely out of service and passion. 

I am asking for your support to help make this happen. Every dollar is an investment in the wellbeing of the most vulnerable women and families in India, as well as myself as a promising global health practitioner. Please read on for further juicy details! 


Mental Health issues are a huge cause of disability in India, especially in vulnerable populations such as women, children, and adolescents.  The World Health Organization estimates that by 2030, depression alone will be the leading cause of disability around the world, outpacing heart disease, cancer, and HIV.

Learn more, in a TED talk by Dr. Vikram Patel, leading expert in global mental health, who founded the research organization Sangath where I will work in India: 

Interventions addressing mental health at the community level are being piloted accross India, with great potential to address gaps in treatment. Local women are trained to become health workers who deliver mental  health interventions, from inside the community. These interventions are sustainable, locally-driven, cost-effective, and can effectively treat common mental disorders. 

Research is necessary in order to show which promising mental health interventions are effective. Research is essential in order for these interventions to be adopted into the Indian National Mental Health Policy, so that millions of people can benefit from these services. 

I have secured an internship at a premier Indian research institute Sangath, which focuses on mental health interventions at the community level. I am beyond excited to contribute to their research, which will help me build skills to continue this work worldwide. I have a critical chance to learn from leading experts in this field, including Dr. Vikram Patel, a founder of the global mental health movement (featured in video above). 

Sangath does not have the funds to support this critical research internship. I will be assisting them out of my own passion and spirit of service, with no compensation or funds provided to support this experience. I am asking for your support to help me fund this critical research and support for community mental health in India.

Research excites me, because it is the foundation for the scaling of any promising intervention. The more research we have, the more people we can ultimately reach. My motivation is to translate research into practice and policies, which is clear given my past experiences.

Previously, my research in maternal/newborn health in Cambodia was presented to national level senior policy makers, including the Head of the National Reproductive Health Program. I am not afraid to take action to advocate for those most vulnerable, in front of those with power to make huge changes for entire populations. 

As the past recipient of three competitive research grants, I am also experienced at managing money for research efficiently and appropriately in low-resource settings. In fact, in my undergraduate career, I was selected as the sole member of my class to speak in front of the University President and Board of Trustees on the topic of student academic research and service. 

When you invest in this project, you are investing in both myself as a practitioner, and the opportunity to scale very promising interventions that address critical mental health issues in India. This is an investment in which you can expect great returns. Passion, drive, and intellect go a long way in transforming our world for the better!

Video on global mental health challenges and promising solutions, by Dr. Vikram Patel:

Please don't hesitate to contact me with any questions or for further information. 

Photo credit: Global Health Photo | Paul Joseph Brown
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