Harnessing MHPSS for Trust-Building, Peace and Development

Policy Briefing

Thematic Track: Promoting peaceful and inclusive societies

Harnessing MHPSS for Trust-Building, Peace and Development

United Nations Institute for Training and Research, Division for Peace, United Nations Development Programme, Interpeace
  • 02/11/2023 @ 11:00 - 12:30
  • Conference Center C1 (pétale 5) and Online

UNDP, UNITAR, and Interpeace have joined forces to present a pivotal policy briefing, addressing the integration of Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) into contemporary peacebuilding methodologies. Recognizing MHPSS as a cornerstone for fostering resilience, reconciliation, and trust-building, this collaborative venture is set to delineate innovative strategies that coalesce MHPSS with peacebuilding measures including livelihoods programming.

UNDP stands at the forefront with its guidance note on "Integrating Mental Health and Psychosocial Support into Peacebuilding." Actively involved in 27 countries, they have solidified their commitment by offering knowledge sharing platforms, technical assistance, and capacity-building initiatives centered on MHPSS.

Interpeace delves deep with its seminal practice paper, ‘Mind the Peace’. Celebrating a holistic approach within the Humanitarian-Peace-Development (HPD) nexus, their strategy advocates for  participatory multistakeholder design and management, as is being tested in places such as Ukraine, Northern kenya, Libya and Yemen, highlighting the fruits of such and approach by real-world case studies from their transformative Rwanda programme.

Completing this triad, UNITAR brings to the table invaluable insights from their interventions in Mali, Tanzania, and Colombia. Their work underscores the integral role of MHPSS in driving stabilisation and reconciliation processes, effectively reshaping the contours of sustainable peace and societal resilience.

Beyond humanitarian intervention, the briefing is set to spotlight the transformative potential of MHPSS in longer-term peacebuilding and violence prevention. The discourse will not only address current challenges but also chart the future trajectory of peacebuilding, probing into opportunities presented by digital transformation.

This unique collaboration promises a harmonious amalgamation of the expertise and experiences from UNDP, UNITAR, and Interpeace. Attendees are poised to be part of invigorating discussions, expert dialogues, and a comprehensive exploration, emphasizing the transformative essence of MHPSS in curating a peaceful tomorrow.


  • Dr. Sara Clarke-Habibi, Peacebuilding and Learning Specialist, MHPSS Focal Point, UNITAR, Division for Peace


  • Abiosseh Davis, Head of Global Design, Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning, Interpeace
  • Frank Kayitare, Interpeace Rwanda Country Representative, Interpeace
  • Nika Saeedi, Team Leader, Prevention of Violent Extremism, Global Focal Point on MHPSS, UNDP NY
  • Michael Niconchuk, MHPSS Expert Roster, Programme Advisor, UNDP