Young Women and Mental Health

Historically neglected and marginalised within public health, the mental health policy in India has suffered setbacks due to the stigma surrounding it. However, there is a growing prevalence of mental health issues in India impacting a large section of young people as well as adults. Fear of ostracism which prevents early detection and cure, is especially heightened for some vulnerable sections of the population which already operate within a framework of intersecting structural subordination, for instance young women from marginalised sections of society. Sama’s ongoing engagement with young people and its report “Dataspeak: Early Marriage and Health” has indicated lack of data and analysis on mental health of young women, including those in situations of early marriage.

Sama’s current initiative aims to build an understanding which departs from a medicalised approach of ‘mental illness’ and explores young women’s perceptions of mental well-being and coping mechanisms through their narratives.


Participation in AMCCON 2017

Amrita and Kalyani from Sama presented a paper titled Sexual and Reproductive Rights and Mental Well being: Narratives of Young Women from Rural India (2016) under the subtheme- Sexual and Reproductive Health at Achutha Menon Centre Public Health Conference (AMCCON) 2017 organised in Trivandrum on January 6-7, 2017 by Achutha … Continue reading

The Mental Healthcare Bill Fails to Humanise How Mental Illness is Approached

Kalyani Badola, Amrita Gupta, Ruchi Bhargava| The Wire|16 December 2016 The Mental Healthcare Bill, 2013 has received a lot of attention since it was passed by the Rajya Sabha in August this year. In the Bill, provisions like decriminalisation of suicide, advance directives and nominated representatives introduce a rights-based approach for individuals. … Continue reading

Study on Young Women and Mental Health: Data Collection

The fieldwork commenced in January 2016 in Rajsamand district of Rajasthan and in February in Pratapgarh district of Uttar Pradesh. Field visits to the study sites were done where fieldwork included FGDs with women in the community; In-Depth Interviews with young women both married and unmarried between 18-24 years and … Continue reading

Session on ‘Perspectives on Understanding Women’s Mental Health’

Sama organized a capacity building session on ‘Perspectives on understanding Women’s Mental Health’ where Dr. Renu Addlakha from Centre for Women’s Development Studies (CWDS) was invited as a Resource Person. The session was held on March 5, 2016 in Delhi, it was based on her book ‘Deconstructing Mental Illness: An … Continue reading

Study on Young Women and Mental Health: Piloting Study Tools

The tools for the study on Young Women and Mental Health (Focus Group Discussion, Key informant Interviews and Indepth Interview guides) were piloted in December 2015 in Lalitpur district of Uttar Pradesh. Sahajini Shiksha Kendra, a local organization in Lalitpur facilitated this pilot through its community outreach. Sahajini Shiksha Kendra … Continue reading

Study exploring mental health issues among young women

Sama is conducting a study titled ‘Exploring Mental Health Issues among Young Women’. It is an exploratory qualitative research study being conducted in the two districts of Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan. The aim of this study is to explore the factors that affect mental health among young women including the context … Continue reading