Public Mental Health


The Division, which  includes the Alan J. Flisher Centre for Public Mental Health (, was launched in August 2010. The Division was formally accredited by the UCT University Research Committee as a Research Centre in 2014 and was recognised as a World Health Organization Collaborating Centre in 2015. The objectives of the Division of Public Mental Health are: (1)   to build capacity in Africa for public mental health, mental health policy, planning and legislation, through accredited post-graduate teaching programmes; (2) to undertake high quality research in the areas of public mental health, mental health policy, services, legislation and human rights; (3) to advocate for the inclusion of mental health on health policy and development agendas in Africa; and (4) to provide advisory services to provincial and national government in African countries, and international health and development agencies, with the goal of strengthening mental health policy and systems.


The Alan J Flisher Centre for Public Mental Health is based at 46 Sawkins Road in Rondebosch with office space for the Centre’s soft-funded staff and postgraduate fellows. Collaborators and postgraduate students from countries around the world, particularly in Africa, add to the vibrant culture and extend the Centre’s presence beyond South Africa.

Staff in the Division

Katherine Sorsdahl

Shaheema Allie

Thanya April

Kevin Ernstzen

Emily Garman

Gillian Hanslo

Liesl Hermanus

Simone Honikman

Roxanne Jacobs

Emma McKinney

Mirriam Mkhize

Songelwa Mobo

Noma Moshani

Megan Pool

Tyla Prinsloo

Claire van der Westhuizen

Chesney Ward-Smith