ADVOCACY AND LOBBYING FOR PSYCHIATRY AND COUNSELING SERVICES
At the moment no organization or movement in Rwanda advocates or lobbies for the needs of the users and survivors of psychiatry and counseling services. To do this we must organize our selves and make our voices heard. The establishment and the building of the membership base of NOUSPR will be the start to contributing to the dignity and voice of this disability group.
PROMOTING HUMAN RIGHTS
In order for users and survivors of psychiatry to become a strong movement that believe in themselves, it is vital that we know our rights and our legal standing in Rwanda. We must be strong and believe in our inherent right to dignity. NOUSPR members will be made aware of their rights through trainings.
CREATING AWARENESS ABOUT THE DISABILITY
NOUSPR intends to create awareness raising campaigns for different sectors to be sensitized.The awareness about psychosocial disability is very low amongst all sectors of society. The unsubstantiated myths and misconceptions regarding users and survivors of psychiatry perpetuate unjust discrimination. Examples:
• Users and survivors of psychiatry cannot participate in decision making about issues concerning them
• Users and survivors of psychiatry cannot decide on how to be treated
• Users and survivors of psychiatry cannot decide on their property rights
• Users and survivors of psychiatry have no freedom of expression.
Mental health should been seen as a psycho social disability, where the users and survivors have the same rights as other disability groups. The disability movement in Rwanda is loosely organized and certain disability groups are stronger and naturally dominate the movement. NOUSPR will build the capacity of a national office and at least three district offices that will be able and willing to represent the psychiatric users and survivors of Rwanda. The movement will be built from the ‘bottom up’, with NOUSPR working with communities from the start in different districts.
INFORMATION AND SERVICES
Too often information is not shared among and with the disability movement, and it is very difficult for our members to access information and services enjoyed by other citizens. We would like to get rid of the mentality of not sharing information and adopt an approach within NOUSPR that affords everyone an opportunity to give his or her opinion. NOUSPR intends to build up and share information with its members and other disability groups.