Visiting Bantul Regency’s Government: Building Cooperation and Strengthening Ties with Alumni

On Monday, March 5, 2018, delegates from UGM’s Faculty of Psychology visited the office of Bantul’s regent. It should be noted that the current regent, Drs. H. Suharsono is an alumni of the Faculty of Psychology in UGM, Class of ’89. Through this visit, hopefully there can be stronger synergy between the faculty and Bantul in the fields of community mental health and education.

Representatives from the Health Department, Social Services, Education and Sports Department, as well as BAPPEDA attended the meeting along with the dean of our faculty, Prof. Dr. Faturochman, M.A., Vice Dean of Research, Community Service, and Collaboration, Prof. Kwartarini Wahyu Yuniarti, M.Med.Sc., Ph.D, Diana Setyawati, M.HSc.Psy., Ph.D, director of Center of Public Mental Health (CPMH), Nurul Kusuma Hidayati, the manager of CPMH, and Adelia Khrisna Putri, S.Psi., M.Sc, assistant to the Vice Dean of Research, Community Service, and Collaboration.

On the same path with UGM’s vision: locally rooted and globally respected, the faculty is tasked with the responsibility to compete internationally while simultaneously give back and serve the community in the field of individual and community mental health. Community mental health is served through public facilities, such as the community health centre known as puskesmas, which makes cooperation with stakeholders and policy makers very crucial.

The agenda for this meeting was to discuss past and future cooperation between the faculty and Bantul Regency. The main goal of this cooperation is to build a comprehensive mental health system in Bantul. Currently, there are only four psychologists in four community health centres in Bantul, and it is still less than what is needed to serve the whole community.

The Education Department is very interested with the concept of Sekolah Sejahtera that is brought up by Mrs. Diana Setyawati. This program from CPMH is a school program aiming for people involved in schools can support each other, give positive appreciation, and motivate each other, so that children and teenagers in schools can experience growth, understand their potentials, be strong, productive, and can contribute to their communities in a positive way. The components of Sekolah Sejahtera includes the student handling referral system, policies that support subjective well-being, stakeholder awareness, and teachers trained in mental health promotion, prevention, curation, and rehabilitation. The government in Bantul Regency feels that this system of Sekolah Sejahtera should be developed until the junior high level.

The follow-up of this meeting will be the creation of an MoA between the faculty and Bantul Regency.