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22 January – Online Symposium Global Mental Health – Netherlands

Join us for the online NVTG Symposium on Friday 22 January 2021

In the first 2 hours of the symposium we will discuss the state of the art in Global Mental Health, with a particular focus on psychosocial support in LMICs.

In the last hour of the symposium the Laureate of the first Sauerwein Medal will be awarded, we will launch the NVTG Knowledge Centre Global Health, and there is a session where young Global Health researchers will pitch their work.

For more information, NVTG 2021 – GMH Symposium.

Part I – Global Mental Health, 14 -16.00 (CET), keynote speakers:

  • Paul Bekkers, Special Envoy Mental Health and Psycho Social Support at Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
  • Joop de Jong, Em Prof of Cultural Psychiatry and Global Mental Health, Amsterdam UMC and Boston University School of Medicine.
  • Mark Jordans, Professor of Child and Adolescent Global Mental Health at the University of Amsterdam and Director of Research and Development at War Child Holland.
  • Nagendra Luitel, Head Research Transcultural Psychosocial Organization, Nepal and PhD Candidate University of Amsterdam.
  • Marit Sijbrandij, Associate Professor Clinical Psychology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and the World Health Organization (WHO) Collaborating Center for Research and Dissemination of Psychological Interventions.
  • Claudi Bockting, Professor of Clinical Psychology in Psychiatry, Amsterdam University Medical Center and Co-director Centre for Urban Mental Health.

Chair: Rembrant Aarts, psychiatrist at Mentrum Mental Health, MD Global Health and Tropical Medicine (AIGT).

Part II, NVTG, 16.00 – 17.00 (CET):

  • Uniting Streams: abstract presentations of promising researches in Global (mental) health. Closing date for abstract submission: 9 AM January 15, 2021, at:
  • Awarding of the first (2021) Sauerwein Medal
  • Launch of the NVTG Knowledge Centre.
Practical info:

Participation free of costs, registration is required, send an email to

Accreditation NVTG = 3 points

Accreditation NVvP -> pending

Organized by: NVTG + NVTG Working Group Global Mental Health + Uniting Streams + TROIE


It took decades of advocacy to get recognition for mental health, not as a separate and isolated, but as an integral important part of health (“Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being… “). Followed by the years in which the mental health community worked on research on diagnosis, treatment and care of people suffering from mental illnesses – by, among others, conducting clinical trials and operational research gathering evidence on ‘what works’, where and how. Now it is time to more prominently position mental health within global health, in research and in practice.

In this symposium we will focus on one particular area of global mental health: psychosocial support in LMICs, including in conflict situations. As Sigrid Kaag, Dutch Minister of Minister for Foreign Trade and International Cooperation, mentioned on the occasion of the International Conference on Mental Health & Psychosocial Support in Crisis Situations 2019 in the Hague: “Crisis situations can impact lives in a variety of ways. And yet within the domains of humanitarian assistance and development cooperation, the focus is almost solely on the treatment or reconstruction of physical damage. For too long now, the international community has focused exclusively on healing the physical injured and rebuilding devastated structures. Somewhere along the line, it has forgotten that broken souls need mending too.” Increasingly, this part of mental health has become a priority area for many health professionals, governments and policy makers. And rightfully so, as the figures speak for themselves.