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Mental health help

Mental health help

Kampong Thom has become the fourth Cambodian province to benefit from a Japanese-funded

mental health project. The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) will spend

$170,000 assisting the Transcultural Psychosocial Organization (TPO) to implement

its latest mental health project.

Kann Kall, director of TPO, said the centers were key to helping Cambodians overcome

years of psychological distress. He said civil war, the sudden shift to a free market,

and environmental problems such as flooding had all left their psychological mark.

"Our goal in Kampong Thom is to support 120 village communities by providing

psychosocial and mental health support," he said "The mainstays of our

program will be educating, training and establishing self-help groups and running

counseling services."

To accomplish this, said Kall, TPO would construct an outpatient facility in the

province where people would learn how to combat mental health problems.

The Minister for Social Affairs, It Samheng, applauded the project, saying that the

people of Kampong Thom had suffered terribly over the years.

"Rebuilding people's mental health is very important, not least because such

problems can damage the country's development," he said. "When people build

a sound family, they help create a stronger nation."

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