The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) have signed an agreement to enhance capacity for mental health and psychosocial support in disaster management in the Caribbean.

“As we begin the 2018 hurricane season, we are pleased to launch this project and partnership with CDB,” said Jessie Schutt-Aine, PAHO’s Subregional Program Coordinator for the Caribbean.

“It is imperative that we support our Member States’ preparedness and response efforts. Mental health and psychosocial support needs to be a key part of this process,” she added.

The Barbados-based lending institution said the project aims to build capacity for mental health and psychosocial support within the health sector through regional and in-country training within the sector, as well as with agencies outside the sector, and the broader community.

In addition, the project is expected to lead to the establishment of a roster of mental health professionals in the Caribbean, who can be mobilised to affected countries in the event of an emergency.

CDB and PAHO will contribute a combined total of approximately US$470,000 towards the project.

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