The Bridge UK-Angola

Psychiatric Hospitals

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Psychiatric Hospitals in Angola


Most psychiatric patients in Angola have had to endure unbelievably bad conditions.

Severe cuts to already poor state funding resulted in cold, damp and filthy conditions for the most vulnerable in Angolan society.

There is now a review taking place of all Angolan institutions, including the old psychiatric hospitals

Resident numbers can be as high as 400+ of people with learning difficulties, mental illness, physical disability or just people with social problems who have ended up in care. Levels of disability can vary from very high dependancy to mild or even none.



Over the past ten years, we have delivered a programme of combined arts therapy for special needs adults.

This consists of art, music, movement and drama therapy and basic one to one sensorial work with adults with severe disability and sensorial deprivation.

We have found that this programme acts as a tool for introducing Human Rights issues into insititutions where most of the residents have special needs.

It helps to provide them with their own voice while developing confidence and self expression.

Please see further details of our combined arts therapy programme which also covers our training manual and magazine.



We are helping our Angolan partners to continue this work and, crucially, help change attitudes to the mentally ill.

Currently, all residents in these institutions are being assessed with a view to reducing resident numbers to 75 people per institution.

It is a concern that many residents will be returned to the county of their birth or family origin - where they may never have been for many years or have no connection with.


Angolan eleven-year-old Joaquina Francisco - tuberculosis patient.



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