More nurses trained in mental health care skills; more community-based workers; more outreach work so that those living in rural areas have some form of mental health and emotional support. These are some of the main requests of those working in mental health care in Pakistan, and whom Unity in Health has been meeting over the past two weeks. In recent years, large sections of Pakistan’s society have been affected, directly and indirectly, by natural disasters of catastrophic proportions (such as the 2005 earthquake which killed more than 80,000 people, and injured thousands more) and brutal conflict. The physical and psychological scars left by such large events are yet to be measured and fully assessed. This is a land hopeful for its future, but aware of the urgency of addressing some of its population’s most basic needs. Over the coming weeks, we will continue exploring how Unity in Health can support some of the organisations and individuals running services and reaching out to those mostly affected by mental health problems. Keep an eye on our progress!

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Punjab, Pakistan. February 2019. Credit: UiH