We demand maximum attention for psychiatry in Gambia!
It has never been better in the Netherlands, but what about the psychiatric care in Gambia. Gambia is the smallest country on the African continent and lies in the west, surrounded entirely by Senegal. It has about two million inhabitants and is one of the most densely populated countries in Africa. The economy of Gambia is one of the weakest in the world. Tanka Tanka Psychiatric Hospital is a psychiatric hospital in Gambia and is part of the General Hospital Edward Franciss Small Teaching Hospital in Banjul Tanka Tanka is housed in Sukuta. It is a closed institution where 80 to 100 patients stay twenty-four hours a day. These are often the socially disadvantaged and disadvantaged people with a psychiatric problem, sometimes in combination with an intellectual disability, which are often rejected in society. Psychiatry in Gambia receives little attention from the government. Possibly due to the cultural complexity of defining psychiatric problems as a disease. The psychiatric problems are diverse: there are people with mood disorders (depression and mania), psychotic disorders (including schizophrenia), mental limitations and addiction problems (whether or not in combination with psychiatry). The patients are treated medicinally. There is hardly any other '' therapies ''. The staff is little educated with regard to psychiatric care. The financial resources are limited. Although the staff receives salaries, nutrition and medication for the patients are regularly compromised. Moreover, the patients stay in an unsafe building. A lot has to be done both in terms of quality of care and in terms of maintenance of the building.
We do not want to watch passively!
We are the board of the Dutch foundation '' Support Mental Health Care Tanka Tanka ''. Some of our board members have worked in Dutch psychiatry for years and with great pleasure. We regularly travel to Gambia at personal costs. As a result, the bond with the employees and the problems of the psychiatric hospital Tanka Tanka is great. We support Tanka Tanka Psychiatric Hospital by, among other things:
To transfer knowledge and expertise regarding care, management and facilities and;
To raise funds, attract sponsors, organize activities and / or meetings.
We opt for projects that the management and staff of the hospital deem necessary, but critically review the necessity and feasibility.
And then make clear agreements about which support may be expected.
In the Netherlands we seek cooperation with parties such as mental health care, NGOs, construction, education, etc.) and in Gambia with the government, other organizations that focus on psychiatry, etc.)
Our core values are:
Integrity (reliability, an open way of dealing with each other) and service (ambition is focused on the importance of psychiatric patients in Gambia and the organization Tanka Tanka);
Committed and decisive: focused on achieving results; decision-making about projects is transparent;
Approachable: taking and giving responsibility;
Demanding: coming from problem definition through analysis to action.
It is too easy to think that the government in Gambia or the general hospital itself must solve its problems and that they themselves are responsible for the psychiatric care of these patients and the building in which they live. Or that they can actually finish it without our involvement. Our opinion is that we can not lean back and want to lean or lock ourselves up in our own comfortable world. If a hospital in a developing country such as Gambia can not provide its own patients with the care that is necessary and can not accommodate in a safe building, we have and feel the responsibility and obligation to investigate what can be done. It is about people who can not help it that they are born in Gambia.
Do you want to support Tanka Tanka!
We ask you to feel related to us and to make your expertise and financial resources available for the projects that we are setting up within Tanka Tanka. These are projects in the field of (the quality) of care, facilities (building maintenance, facility services, etc.) and management. Feeling related to us means that you become involved and connect with improving the care for patients and the environment of Tanka Tanka.
With your help we will get this off the ground !!