It was in 1990 that the concept of CUMI (The Committee for the Upliftment of the Mentally Ill) had its beginnings.
A group of socially conscious, concerned citizens in Montego Bay, spearheaded by then Mayor Arthur Gilchrist, Elizabeth Hall and Joy Crooks realized that the mentally ill, and in particular those who were “street people” or homeless, were in dire need of help.
They immediately went into action planning and preparing.
And so it was … just one year later …in August 1991 that CUMI opened its doors to the Rehabilitation Day Centre. Operations commenced Mondays-Fridays 8:00am-4:00pm.
“To reach out and advocate for the homeless and other mentally ill persons in Montego Bay (St. James) and within the limits of resources available attempt to improve their level of physical and mental health as well as their basic quality of life.”
These have been designed and updated to best result in an overall improved quality of life for our “clients” … promoting physical, mental/emotional and spiritual well-being. They include:
Activities of daily living
Life skills training
Social interaction and integration (visitors play an important part)
Trust and hope have been key elements in facilitating recovery …This has resulted in the development of balance and stability … self-worth, respect and purpose … empowerment. And … best of all …amidst this serious, courageous and sometimes difficult task of relearning… there is fun, camaraderie, laughter and love. And a tremendous sense of relief and belonging. The stigma has disappeared.
CUMI’s goal is to
rehabilitate the individual by helping him/her to restructure his/her life
help him/her to learn how to manage his/her mental health challenges
help him/her to regain order and a rhythm of daily living
re-unite him/her with community/family
help him/her, if possible, to be productive and able to contribute to his/her own sustainability
facilitate his/her experience of the joy of living
It is deeply rewarding and fulfilling to participate in this life-changing process … we consider it a privilege to serve.
It could be me … and it could be you! Mental illness is no respecter of persons. Statistics show that more females are affected than males and that especially during these times the percentages have increased overall.
CUMI is a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), Registered Non-Profit Charitable Foundation based in Montego Bay, Jamaica, W.I.
As a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), CUMI partners with the Cornwall Regional’s Psychiatric Department, Type V Health Centre, Community Clinics and Mental Health Officers all of which generally provide community mental health care. In addition, CUMI is affiliated with other NGO’s whose services include a night shelter, food and clothing and complement the regional psychiatric delivery of mental health care. All are invited to visit and participate in the daily activities. Unfortunately, these have had to be scaled right down during these pandemic times. Hopefully we will see a full resumption soon.