Services Details
Mental Health Plugin

Our Approach

Manas provides psychosocial interventions by plugging in mental health in existing delivery systems such as care and protection homes, schools, colleges and corporate without creating new structures. This helps us not to be seen as an external agent in the community but as part of the system.

 Manas’ vision to decentralize mental health services and normalize the idea of accessing mental health materialized in care kick started the Mental Health Plugins project. What started with experiments with Asha Kiran home, become a full-fledged project in 2006. Mental Health Plugins are essentially mental health units setup in existing social and health service delivery systems to ensure they become part of the system. For Eg, by leveraging an existing social project like the Nirmal Chhaya project

 MHP(Maximum human performance) is the way we plug in to the core intervention existing /community and providing in the process key mental health services.

Mental Health Unit, Nirmal Chhaya Comlex


One of our key Mental Health Plugin projects has been setting up the Mental Health Unit (MHU) at the Nirmal Chhaya Complex since January 2010. This was possible with the support of Department of Women & Child Development, Delhi and the Ford Foundation. The MHU has been providing mental health services to over 1200 destitute, homeless children and women every year, housed in the 9 homes of the complex. Manas received the Edelhive Social Innovation Honors, 2012 for this intervention at Nirmal Chhaya Complex.


These 9 homes include Nari Niketan, Short Stay Home, Widow Home, After Care Home, Beggar Home, Home for Healthy children of Leprosy Patients, Observation Home for Girls, Children Home for Girls, foster care, etc. under the Immoral Trafficking Prevention Act,1956(ITP Act) and Juvenile Justice(Care and Protection) Act. Most of the 400 female residents are in the age group of 2 yrs to 18 yrs, though their age ranges from 2 - 80 yrs and are residents of the Balika Grah I & II in the complex.


These Institutions cater to the needs of children and women who are in distress, are destitute, neglected, abandoned; victims of atrocities, violence, sexual assault and family disputes. Their psychosocial background makes them all the more vulnerable to behavioral and psychological disorders. It is hence critical to provide them with the right mental health services that can bring out the potential within them and help them grow out of their present conditions.


Objectives of the MHU at NirmalChhaya


i)              Identification and treatment of mental illnesses in women and children at Nirmalchhaya Complex.

ii)             To coordinate with and facilitate the work of the welfare officers in the rehabilitation of mentally ill women and children.

iii)           Preventive counseling of women and children who have suffered violence and abuse at some stage in their lives.

iv)       Promotion of positive mental health to make women and children at Nirmal Chhaya capable of independent existence.


Apart from the above mentioned services, Manas also organizes various workshops and events within the premises for the residents on:

§     Art of Living

§     Anti bully Campaign

§     Christmas Celebration

§     Visit of the students from University of Wisconsin

§     Fashion Show to mark Independence day

§     Participation in Airtel Delhi Marathon by the residents

§     Psycho-Sexual Education workshops

§     Magic Shows

§     Christmas and New Year Celebrations

§     World Mental Health Day Celebrations

§     Holi Celebration

§     Special Education classes


A committee appointed by the Ho n’ble High court of Delhi externally evaluated our work at Nirmal Chhaya. It gives us great pleasure to say that this committee has greatly appreciated our work and recommended the extension of services to other children's homes.


Mental Health Services at Boy’s Home, Lajpat Nagar

 Children's mental health warrants unique inputs with respect to medical, psychological and social aspects. At Manas, we aim for youth to have good health, happy, rewarding relationships, engagement in meaningful work, recreation, and friendship. All of these will enable them to manage psychological and emotional difficulties with their lives more effectively.


Since its establishment in 2012 the Mental Health Unit (MHU) continues to work towards its goal of providing comprehensive mental health services to the residents. It uses the lens of positive, preventive and proactive mental healthcare. The MHU first screens all the residents, identifies psychological deficits and areas for growth and development. Based on the findings, individualized treatment and management plan for each child is given. In order to understand the child, regular interactions with welfare officers, care takers and peers are generated to corroborate information from all the possible sources within the home. Whenever contact with families is possible, family therapy is also undertaken.

 One of the key features of the MHU is conducting regular group work with children to impart social skills. These sessions focus on varying themes depending on the needs of the group and become dynamic places for healthy team building. Appropriate ways of relating to self in relation with others are taught alongside imparting life skills that develop healthy personalities. Well-being lies not merely in the eradication of mental disorders but towards the conscious achievement of positive feelings and happiness.

 This unit was setup in partnership with Ford Foundation and Delhi State Department of Women and Child Development. This home caters to vulnerable boys between the ages of 6-18 years in need of care and protection with focus on restoring them to their families. Whether the child is picked up from the street, caught in a raid or voluntarily given up by the family through an NGO, all the children are referred to the home by the Child Welfare Committee (CWC).  The home does not cater to children in conflict with law. There are about 200 residents in the boys home divided equally among CH1 and CH2.

                                                      Past Projects

 Observation Home for Juveniles in conflict with Law

The MHU at the Observation Home for Boys, Kingsway Camp and the Place of Safety, MajnukaTila was set up  to provide mental health services to the residents. This was done with the support of the Ministry of Women and Child Development. The juveniles in conflict with the law are engaged with psychological interventions to assist them in dealing with their issues and conflicts. To derive a more constructive understanding of the boys, and achieve a holistically positive solution to their psychological distress, we realized it was necessary to involve the family. Taking from here Manas regularized the family sessions as part of the counseling.


The family counseling sessions serve as a platform to corroborate information regarding the child and clarify misunderstandings. Tips for maintaining adaptive communication between the members in the family are introduced to foster healthier adjustments and psychosocial support for the resident. Constant interaction with welfare officers and inputs from medical assessments are corroborated to gain an overall understanding of the residents’ mental health and implement holistic approach to assessment.


 Mental Health Services at Observation Home, Seva Kutir Complex, Delhi

 Manas expanded and replicated its model of custodial care mental health services at the Observation Home for Boys (Sewa Kutir Complex) from March 2012 onwards. Sewa Kutir looks after children and young adults who are in conflict with laws and are found to be distressed, destitute, neglected and abandoned. Some of these children are also victims of atrocities, violence, sexual assault and family disputes. This disturbed social life leaves them in a troubled mental state especially with their psychosocial background that makes them all the more vulnerable to behavioral and psychological disorders.


Our services look into in-house prevention, identification and treatment of mental stress and psychological disorders via counseling and psychiatric intervention, thereby promoting well-being.


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