Improving students' mental health in Bangladesh

Shampa (15), second from left attends school with her classmates at Palli Mangal Girls High School, Bangladesh.


In recent years, Bangladesh has made significant progress in addressing the mental health needs of its citizens. In 2018, the country approved a Mental Health Act and developed a mental health policy that prioritises community-based services and support. However, it was only during the COVID-19 pandemic, when all educational institutions were closed for long periods, that the urgency of addressing child and adolescent mental health in schools became more visible. To address the need for mental health support in schools, UNICEF collaborated with the Ministry of Education to introduce school-based Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) programmes and integrate mental health and psychosocial well-being in the national curriculum transformation.