16 October 2012
Port Harcourt, Nigeria
The Port Harcourt Rehabilitation Facility in the Niger Delta houses over 170 people with mental disabilities who were formerly living on the streets. Originally designed as a home for widows, the building became a psychiatric hospital in 1999, as homeless people were cleared from the streets in a government clean-up in anticipation of the FIFA World Youth Soccer Championships.
In areas of crisis—in failed states, in refugee camps, in countries where the infrastructure has collapsed—the mentally ill are frequently condemned to neglect or lives of misery. Disregarded in parts of the world by government and the aid community, sometimes far from family support networks, the mentally ill can lead isolated lives, subject to ill treatment.