Who We Are
The Regional Psychosocial Support Initiatives (REPSSI) is a renowned pan African organisation that has been providing holistic psychosocial care and support to girls, boys and the youth in East and Southern Africa. The organisation was founded in 2002.
Our programmes are spread across 13 countries and aim to respond to the psychosocial, mental health and social protection needs of children and families affected by: HIV and AIDS, conflict, poverty and social strife. Programmes are delivered through partnerships with regional bodies, national governments and non-governmental organisations.
REPSSI is renowned for the development of high quality, evidence-informed psychosocial support tools and resources, which are used globally within programmes and services for children, youth, families and communities.
Through our programmes, children and youth who enjoy psychosocial and mental wellbeing are able to thrive, respond to life’s shocks and challenges and find opportunities in a complex and fast-changing world.
We believe in creating sustainable partnerships. For the last 18 years, we have maintained a range of partnerships at community, county, regional and international levels. REPSSI works closely with the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the East African Community (EAC) and the African Union as well as with a range of governments, academic institutions, civil society organisations, researchers and mental health professionals. In line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), REPSSI believes that psychosocial support is a critical enabler for the achievement of all the SDGs.
We execute our programmes using a four-pronged approach:
Research and Material Development
Building capacity and promote evidence based programming models
Influence policy and practice
To achieve our goals, we focus on the following areas:
- We train health practitioners to provide care and protection to all girls, boys and youth through their health services
- We support adolescents and young people affected by HIV to learn life skills
- We help families to give children infected with HIV love, care and protection
- We enhance access to and uptake of sexual and reproductive health and rights for girls, boys and the youth
- We provide psychosocial support to families affected by cancer.
- We conduct mental health needs assessments; screening and diagnosis and advise on enrolment into appropriate treatment programs.
- We encourage girls, boys, families and communities to prevent violence against children and to adopt more positive gender norms
- We train counsellors for Gender-based violence survivors in techniques to promote healing and recovery of their lives.
- We provide interventions for children who are in conflict with the law.
- We invest in skilling the social service workforce by developing competence based certificate and diploma training programmes
- We train teachers on how to collaborate to provide love, care and protection to learners
- We promote the role of mothers and fathers in giving love, care and support for the development of young children.
- We build family and community resilience and promote protection of the environment and reduce climate change through community dialogues
- We build capacity to understand and respond to the social and emotional consequences of disasters and humanitarian emergencies in the region
Our Core Values
REPSSI is guided by and exhibits the following core values in its organisational life and practices:
What does REPSSI do to help?
Our assistance includes providing easy-to-use, evidence-based and culturally appropriate tools, and sharing innovative approaches. We train partners to provide social and mental health services to children, youth and their families and communities. We also develop activities and tools that can be used with children, youth, communities and families.
Impact in Numbers by 2019:
- The REPSSI Mainstreaming Model is a fundamental tool for strengthening psychosocial and mental wellbeing for girls, boys, youth and families within East and Southern Africa.
- With this model, REPSSI has achieved significant success harnessing regional and national political commitment, which resulted in development of regional standards and frameworks, changes in national policies, the development of policy frameworks and tools and extensive investment in psychosocial training for the social services workforce.
- Leveraging on its practice successes and new knowledge, REPSSI will maintain the gains made and intensify its focus on the children, youth, family and community.