IOM launches first professional MSc programme in Psychosocial
By: Mnena Iyorkegh, Abuja
The International Organization for Migration (IOM)’s global strategy on Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) IOM Nigeria, has launched the first Professional Masters’ Degree Programme in Psychosocial Counselling and Conflict Transformation in partnership with the Centre for Peace, Diplomatic and Development Studies, University of Maiduguri.
The curriculum is aimed at assisting professional humanitarian workers to gain knowledge on a broad range of psychosocial considerations in the humanitarian response to displacement, migration and conflict- societies in Borno State, North-East Nigeria.
At the launch, IOM Nigeria Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Programme Manager, Olga Rebolledo, said mental health and psychosocial support are vital element of humanitarian responses for displaced
“With more than 7.9 million people in need of urgent humanitarian aid in this region, mental health and psychosocial support are an essential element of humanitarian responses for populations displaced due to conflicts, climate change, famine and poverty.”
Adding that “Displacement can bring several sources of stress for individuals, families and communities concerned,” .The Head, IOM Nigeria Sub-office in Maiduguri. Vedharaniyam Karuppiah noted that “The partnership with the University of Maiduguri evolved through IOM’s emergency response, supporting the populations affected by more than a decade of prolonged conflict. It is an effective exit strategy enabling government partners to move forward by investing in human capital capable of responding to their communities in need,”
The Director Centre for Peace, Diplomatic and Development Studies, Professor Abubakar Mua’zu explained that “one of the programme’s main objectives is to identify and conceptualise the threats to personal and social wellbeing created by displacement, migration and conflict.”
The design, conceptualisation and launch of the Masters’ degree programme has received funding from the Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA) – USAID and the Swiss Agency for Cooperation and Development and Cooperation (SDC).