Lipi* is a 35-year-old female ready-made garment (RMG) worker in a factory participating in the Moner Kotha project. She lives in Tongi, Dhaka, with her children and husband. Her husband has been abusive and unsupportive both towards her and their children, leading to her feeling increasingly isolated. Despite being the breadwinner of the family, she has no financial independence as her husband controls her earnings.
A mental health para-counsellor at the factory where she works, trained by the Moner Kotha project, recognised that Lipi was struggling and provided her with much-needed support. Lipi received vital acknowledgement of the abuse and challenges she is facing, as well as a space to explore solutions and build coping strategies. Speaking of the support she is receiving, Lipi said, “Sometimes we go through difficult stages in life, we need a non-judgemental space to share our distress. I never had that before. I don’t have an immediate solution, but I know I will find a way forward.”
Early identification and treatment of mental health issues like depression and anxiety is vital. Timely intervention can reduce long-term impacts, improve daily functioning, and foster emotional wellbeing. By preventing issues escalating, individuals have a better chance for recovery and resilience, enhancing their overall quality of life.
*Name changed to protect identity.
Moner Kotha is a mental health project by the British Asian Trust and partners Primark and SAJIDA Foundation.