KOSHISH means ‘making an effort’, and is the first mental health self-help organization in Nepal fighting to improve mental health policy, quality of care, and to challenge prejudice and discrimination suffered by people affected by mental illness.

Matrika Devkota, founder of KOSHISH and a leading advocate on mental health issues, says that one of the worst things for people who are suffering mental illness is the stigma attached to the illness purely through ignorance and prejudice.

KOSHISH’s mission is to educate, raise awareness and promote understanding by talking openly about mental illness, proper diagnoses, treatment and counselling, and the importance of family support.

In DDP’s first project partnership, enabled by support from Jersey Overseas Aid, we provided financial and capacity building support for KOSHISH to set up Nepal’s first ever mental health drop-in day centre which led directly to the setting up of a transit centre for mentally ill women made destitute, forced out of homes and marriages through sheer ignorance or helplessness on the part of families.

KOSHISH continues to advocate for more services throughout the country and at the same time endeavours to follow up on the well-being of the many women they have helped to reintegrate back into their families. DDP is current;y helping KOSHISH develop proposals to raise funds for their dream project: a community-based therapeutic centre.