According to the World Health Organization, approximately one million Tanzanians will be in need of emotional well-being care at some point during their lifetime. Yet of the estimated 2.5 million people currently living in Tanzania who are suffering from emotional distress, only 20 percent have access to counselling services, according to Basic Needs Tanzania.
CDI and KITE seek to close this gap by providing secondary school students, ages 16 to 18, with emotional well-being support in the form of emotional well-being workshops. During this age range, students are at particularly high risk of encountering emotional distress in their personal and academic lives, whether it be in the forms of anxiety, depression, stress, bullying, and/or harassment. UNICEF finds that counselling services are particularly valuable in supporting students of this age group, when they are transitioning into adolescence and adulthood.
This summer, the CDI and KITE team conducted baseline research in the form of student surveys, student interviews, and teacher interviews at two secondary schools in the Ubungo District of Dar Es Salaam. The intention was to better understand student knowledge of and needs for emotional well-being support, and in particular, the types of emotional well-being issues that students might encounter both in and out of school.
Next summer, CDI and KITE will partner with Aga Khan University of Tanzania to scale up this data collection process, with the goal of designing and piloting emotional well-being workshops for students ages 16 to 18 in Dar Es Salaam based on student needs. If the pilot is successful, we hope to eventually launch an emotional well-being workshop series, in collaboration with educators trained in psychiatric knowledge.