Maria Mumu, aged 20, Founder and President of Moshal Mental Health, has been recognised with one of the highest accolades a young person can achieve for social action or humanitarian efforts – The Diana Award.
Maria is not only the first mental health advocate from Bangladesh to win the Diana Award, but her organisation, Moshal, is the youngest mental health organisation to receive international acknowledgement, being recognised only a year after its inauguration.
Moshal is the direct outcome of Maria’s difficult personal events. After the tragic loss of her friend to suicide, as well as her own personal battle with depression and anxiety, Maria became a dedicated mental health advocate to ensure no one else has to go through the same struggles. Maria’s social impact began during her journey to ‘Miss Universe Bangladesh 2019’, where she used her platform to speak about her cause and inspire thousands, saying “Mental Health Matters”. She founded Moshal with the aim of destigmatising mental health, and making mental health-care accessible, affordable and effective for everyone, both nationally and internationally.
Moshal is now the fastest-growing mental health organisation in the country, owing to their exemplary expert panel and one-of-a-kind Client Relations Team. During the COVID-19 pandemic, after noticing the increased need for mental health support, Moshal stepped in to launch the very first hotline providing psychological first-aid to hundreds of people. They recently started a nationwide dialogue on mental health, while providing relief to the underprivileged, and are now moving towards providing free mental health-care to orphans. With never before seen events, such as ‘Youth for the World’, which included participation by seven countries, and campaigns such as ‘Let’s Talk Mental Health’, Moshal is setting the standards for the country’s mental health sector.
“I have a picture in my head where there’s a beautiful family raising their children in a supportive environment. Teachers are understanding; failing isn’t the worst thing, and we live in a society where there’s love and acceptance for those who are suffering mentally.” – Maria Mumu
With Maria’s fearlesss resilience, Moshal moves forward to create an all-inclusive environment and completely change the way society views mental illnesses, subsequently breaking all stigmas associated with them.