Traveller and Roma women highlighted the mental health issues for their communities at the World Congress on Women’s Mental Health which took place in Dublin’s RDS from the 6th to 9th March.
Our Primary Health Care Project produced a booklet for the event – Pavee Beoirs and Lackeens: Our Health, Our Words, which highlights some of the key issues that shape Traveller women’s mental health in Ireland.
Mary Brigid Collins and Missie Collins from our Traveller Primary Health Care Project spoke about the 2010 All Ireland Traveller Health Study carried out by 400 + Traveller women across Ireland, resulting in an unprecedented 80% response rate. They noted that this innovative approach to research worked well and captured data that would otherwise have been unavailable without Traveller participation.
Gabi Muntean of our Roma Project spoke about some of the preliminary results of the National Roma Needs Assessment commissioned by the Department of Justice and due for publication shortly.
She also reflected on the unique nature of the research as it is the first participatory research project of its kind with Roma in Ireland, undertaken with 14 Roma peer researchers.
Focusing on Roma women and mental health, Gabi noted discrimination, unemployment and lack of social protection as sources of stress for Roma women in Ireland.