Round-table to raise awareness of the importance of mental health and secure state support for the Foundation Together Albania

In 2020 alone, some 4,000 people, the majority of whom are young, reached out for mental health and psychological support from This service was established online in 2015 as an e-Counselling platform and operated by Foundation Together Albania (FTA) with UNICEF support. Since its establishment more than 10,000 people have been assisted directly by a group of prominent Albanian psychologists and psychiatrists, united around FTA in this incredibly important initiative, and acting on a voluntary basis.

That year, the services received additional assistance allowing coverage for more beneficiaries and an improved focus on people at risk of, or already affected by, exploitation, abuse and trafficking.

A large round-table held online on 28 January brought together a wide range of important national and international stakeholders in the quest to elevate the importance of mental health and secure state support for services such as

The event was attended by Dr Roberto De Bernardi, UNICEF Albania Representative, Ms. Harriet Morgan, British Embassy Tirana, Ms. Nina Guga, Deputy Minister of Education Sports and Youth, Mr. Albert Nikolla, Deputy Minister of Health and Social Protection, and representatives from academia, professional associations and local and international organizations.

Dr De Bernardi in his address to the meeting said “Our investment a few years back, in making the platform available and accessible for all, has paid back manyfold during these times of crisis. And this is a remarkable lesson that we all must learn from: that mental health is an extremely important part of our well-being; it cannot be ignored, labelled, stigmatized or kept in silence. We must invest now, for the benefit of the generations to come.”

Ms. Morgan said, “For the UK Government mental health-related issues are of utmost importance and it is delighted that such a service in Albania has benefitted from its support.”