|Workshop on Mental Health Protection of Indigenous Populations in Guatemala|
On December 2-4, 2009,
The purpose of the workshop was to exchange experiences regarding mental health problems in the socio-cultural context of indigenous populations in Latin America and
Various problems that affect the mental health of indigenous populations were discussed during the workshop, including violence, alcohol abuse, natural disasters, acculturation, stigmatization, obstacles in accessing health services, and services that are not adapted to the culture of the population. Relevant aspects were analyzed, such as the importance of territory in indigenous cultures, the need for respect, the strengthening and inclusion of traditional medicine in public health services, cultural ways of expressing suffering, and the need for cultural facilitators in the context of western medicine.
The mental health protection of indigenous populations is a task of great importance and a priority due to the magnitude of the psychosocial problems many of these populations have historically suffered from, such as poverty, discrimination, and social exclusion. This is a challenge that requires a comprehensive approach, community participation, and support from many sectors.
Regional Office of the World Health Organization
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