Measure I.2 – Cross-border initiatives targeting the exchange of people and ideas to enhance the professional and civic society cooperation.


Project Title:  UP.S.TREA.M.-Up date of Socializing and TREAtment in Mental health

Project Budget:

  Project Value EU Contribution
Republic of Serbia € 89,000.00 € 49,200.00
Bosnia and Herzegovina €41,020.00 € 32,020.00
TOTAL                                        € 130,020.00 € 81,220.00



Beneficiary of funds in the Republic of Serbia: Caritas Italiana

Beneficiary of funds in Bosnia and Herzegovina: Association for mutual aid in mental distress “FENIX”    



  • “Health Center” – General Hospital, Valjevo, Serbia
  • Caritas Valjevo – Local office of Archdiocese of Belgrade, Valjevo, Serbia


Area of implementation:

  • Serbia: Kolubarski District, city of Valjevo
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina: North East Region – Canton of Tuzla, city of Tuzla


The target groups of the project: Professionals and Operators in MH sector; People affected by MH diseases and their Families; SRB and BiH civil societies at large


Project duration: 01.12.2010. – 31.03.2012


Project objectives:

The overall objective: To improve the quality of life of the mental health patients through the promotion of a new model of Psychiatric Assistance as well as a new model of Re-socialization of MH patients in their own society and community, happening in a cross-border environment.

Project purpose: Introduction of recent and consolidated psychiatric treatment and methodology of re-socialization of Mental Health patients, experimented in Europe, into the cross-border social conditions of SRB and BiH, countries that are an example of new political, administrative and social realities in transition, following the social and general disruptions in the region, created by the traumatic period of 1992-1999.

The specific objectives:

Specific objective 1. Planning for Social and Political Change by creation of active Working Groups, as “Brain of the Project”                                                                                            

Specific objective 2. Exchanging of best practices in Mental Health psychiatric therapies of Valjevo Hospital and in Re-socialization of mentally ill patients carried out by the social experts of the Fenix Association in Tuzla.

Specific objective 3. Training the Communities of Valjevo and Tuzla on “Organization and Development of Mental Health services”, under the observation and verification carried out by the World Health Organization.                                                                    

Specific objective 4. Issuing the results of a cross-border research that analyses the comparative conditions of the new therapies and the methodologies applied in the solidarization activates both in SRB and BiH.

Specific objective 5. Coordinating a common Campaign against the stigmatization that still prevails on Mental Health Patients culminating on the 10th October 2010, the World Day of Mental Health.                                                                                                         


Specific objective 6. Opening a commonly used website open to the public for general information and references, with a specialized, limited area for exchanges by the medical professionals.


Activities and results of the project


Mental health is an important issue for the cross-border region because of traumatic events during the 1990s and the ongoing political and economic transition. Both factors had an effect on many people causing psychiatric disorders (post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, psychosis)  and social problems (isolation, discrimination, prejudice), which have never been adequately dealt with.


The project targeted people with mental disorders and their families, professionals and workers in mental health, as well as, civil societies at large in Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.


On the one hand, the system of mental health protection which has been developed in hospital services in Valjevo and includes important treatment modalities, such as home care visits, was promoted.  On the other hand, community services in Tuzla have been improved thanks to the daily centre ‘Fenix’, an association of patients. Based on these facts, all project actions were planned to promote an exchange of existing best practices and mutual learning experiences.


Cross-border exchange of best practices was promoted by activating two working groups, carrying out two exchange visits and producing two brochures. Moreover, a common education and research program was developed within which two joint trainings were held by European and local experts and the first comparative research on mental health systems in Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina was promoted. Finally, the project supported raising public awareness through promotion of the joint Anti-stigma Campaign and the launch of the website