Welcome to the Discussion Room for MHPSS in Latin America and the Caribbean

This room aims to facilitate the sharing of experiences, lessons learned, and good practices on integrating MHPSS into peacebuilding in the Latin American and Caribbean region.

The room is open for any input you may want to share but to start the conversation it has been framed around two main themes with guiding questions. You can respond to one/more/none of these in your contributions, but please indicate on which of the themes/questions below you are sharing your insights. Kindly note that content translation is available on the top-right corner of the page, where you can choose among 100+ languages.

In your responses, please introduce yourself and tell us whether you have a self-care regime or whether your organization provides staff care to ensure your wellbeing. 

We propose the following guiding questions:

Theme 1: Your experiences 

  1. How do you/your projects integrate/partner/collaborate with the other field?
  2. What have been your successes and/or challenges in linking your work with the other field?
  3. What context/regionally specific elements are you considering and including in your programming on linking MHPSS and Peacebuilding?

Theme 2: Enhancing integration

  1. What resources would your organization need to be better able to work in a way that integrates MHPSS into peacebuilding?
  2. What are the regional and/or cultural considerations that need to be kept in mind when integrating MHPSS into peacebuilding?
  3. What recommendations would you like to make to UNDP regarding the integration of MHPSS into peacebuilding?

Disclaimer: Please note that the room will be open from 11 October to 9 November 2021. Access of UNDP externals to the rooms is based on pre-registration only.

Comments (12)

Friederike Bubenzer Moderator

Good morning friends around the world-we are delighted that you are interested in joining this online platform and would love to hear your thoughts on how to better link the fields of MHPSS and peacebuilding-all your comments are very (very) welcome.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Cristina Custodio

Hello from Puerto Rico!  I am excited to share my perspective as a coach!

Friederike Bubenzer Moderator

Dear Cristina Custodio 

How wonderful to have you with us; we are very excited to learn from you. What does your work entail? What is the current situation on linking these fields in PUerto Rico. So many questions- tell us more!

Cristina Custodio

[~118240] 

Here are some of my answers to the discussion questions posed.  Happy to answer any other questions you may have!

Theme 1: Your experiences

How do you/your projects integrate/partner/collaborate with the other field?

I am a social leadership coach, which means I coach people working for a more equitable world.  I am based in Puerto Rico, yet I serve leaders and communities across Latin America and latinx populations in the US.  As a professional coach credentialed by the International Coaching Federation, I help peacebuilders and other civil society leaders be successful in their own terms.  My work centers on building for the future through a sense of belonging, a mindset of possibility, action, and self-efficacy.

I have coached individual leaders of organizations working in education, youth advocacy, public health, homelessness, the arts, mediation, mentoring, climate change, international development, racial and gender justice.  I have also coached groups of organizations to find areas in which to collaborate focused on complex social issues.

I also serve as global Ambassador for the ICF Foundation, the arm of the International Coaching Federation that promotes coaching for social impact.  We encourage our 44,000 coach members around the world to participate in low/pro-bono coaching projects with civil society organizations whose work supports the UN Agenda 2030. 

I strongly believe the integration of MHPSS and Peacebuilding would be an ideal space for coaching for social impact to flourish.

What have been your successes and/or challenges in linking your work with the other field?

Successes

  • In the ICF Foundation impact surveys, 76% of social impact coaching beneficiaries said the ripple effect of their gains from coaching impacted the operational efficiency of their organization.  What could happen if we could scale these results to peacebuilding missions around the globe?
  • In my group coaching work using roundtable methodologies, beneficiaries have been able to implement consensus-based decision making and work together despite traditionally being seen as competitors.  They have then adopted some of these methodologies moving forward or established long-term cooperative relationships.
  • In my individual coaching, beneficiaries have expressed benefits as more constructive mindsets, effective goal setting and plan execution, as well as greater empathy and resilience.

Challenges

  • Many people outside business circles do not understand the concept of coaching or its benefits.
  • Lack of funding for coaching for those leaders and organizations who need it most.
  • Lack of integration between the coaching world and civil society.
  • Lack of stories of social impact coaching success due to confidentiality clauses that apply to coaching credentials.

Theme 2: Enhancing integration

What resources would your organization need to be better able to work in a way that integrates MHPSS into peacebuilding?

Access to organizations willing to partner with the ICF Foundation so we can provide low/pro-bono coaching to peacebuilders.

What are the regional and/or cultural considerations that need to be kept in mind when integrating MHPSS into peacebuilding?

In Latin America and the Caribbean, there are currently 1,200 credentialed coaches.  Many of them move in circles that do not have much visibility in the peacebuilding space.  We would need to take intentional action to bring these worlds together.

What recommendations would you like to make to UNDP regarding the integration of MHPSS into peacebuilding?

Include individual and group coaching as part of the MHPSS disciplines.

Ghai Chany

Hi Friederike,

Thank you for this initiative,

I have previously received the communication through the email and I dont know if am suppose to be here,

I am joining from Africa in South Sudan, Juba capital.

Nice to be here

Thanks

Ghai C. Dong

Friederike Bubenzer Moderator

Salam Ghai, looking forward to hearing all about your work in Junub Sudan!!!

Friederike Bubenzer Moderator

Dear [~118536] 
Thank you for bringing this interesting angle to our attention. It highlights for me how much more inter-sectoral engagement needs to happen so that success can be shared and challenges overcome through interdisciplinary thinking (i.e. if coaching helps in the business world-and there is so much evidence that it does-how can 'we' use that to our advantage). Could we adapt the model for our often resource-strapped context to develop peer-coaching and learning etc. Key to me is the still lacking inward-looking and duty-of-care lens onto peacebuilding; do you agree?

 

Cristina Custodio

Thank you to the UN (Nika, Rita, Isabella, Gitte et al) and IJR (Friederike, Marian, Yvonne) teams for hosting our conversation last Wednesday EST.  It was my privilege to take part.  I will post additional information here early next week on how I think peacebuilding could benefit from coaching support as part of MHPSS.

Muchas gracias a los Vivian, John, Kevin y Pedro por compartir sus perspectivas.  Aprendí mucho de ustedes.  Espero poder volver a colaborar.

Gracias,

Cristina

Rita Angelini

Dear colleagues,

Thank you for your contributions so far. We are glad to inform you that the closure of the room has been extended to 9 November, in order to allow your widest participation possible.

As such, we encourage you to continue sharing your regional perspectives and experiences, and involve other colleagues if possible.

Warmly,

Rita

Cristina Custodio

Some links on coaching as a possible mental health/mental fitness intervention for peacebuilding, peacebuilders and peacebuilding organizations:

Marian Tankink Moderator

Dear all, thanks a lot for participating in the consultation room  and/or SparkBlue. As Friederike stated in one of the groups, we need to develop a common set of indicators in order to assess whether an integrated approach indeed contributes to more sustainable outcomes for each field. I would like to know if already such indicators are developed and used. I hope that you want to share that with us and also how these indicators are developed and how it works out in practice. Please let us know.


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