Vision for how you live
People and the Environment: Some Suggestions for Sustainable Human Resource Development in Bangladesh
Tapan Kumar Nath, BCS (Administration)
National Coordinator, Healthy Cities Programme
World Health Organization, Dhaka, Bangladesh

Bangladesh is a most densely populated country with limited land and natural resources. It is a country where too many people are struggling in a too small area of land having very limited resources. Due to high rate of Illiteracy poverty and lack of education and awareness; the interaction between the people and environment is not friendly and the sustainable development is not yet ensured. The environmental degradation may cause serious health impact, which may result in economic backwardness of the country. Some pulling and pushing factors like psychological attractions of urban services and unemployment in the rural areas; surplus labour forces migrate from rural to urban area which causes deterioration of the environment with slums and subsistence living conditions. There are indiscriminate use of medicine and pesticides all over the country. Chemical pollutants are being dumped in the drains and waste on the roads side areas. Transports like tempo and babytaxi pollute the air with half-burnt carbon and CO. Water is contaminated with arsenic, bacteria and harmful germs exceeding the WHO's limit There is lacking of institutional capacity to administer criminal justice and the environmental regulations.

Management of urban services is not up to the mark to meet the demand. Rural part of the country is still neglected for which poor villagers are frustrated about their fate. The mass illiteracy has aggravated the whole situation. A massive environmental educational program is needed to implement covering the mass population of the country for effective communication, dissemination of information to create public awareness on environment and lifestyle of the people. New Computer-based Information Technologies, Natural Resource Economics and Environmental Psychology should be included in the curriculum as a common subject for all students. Healthy Cities and institutions can be promoted for environmental protection. Consciousness should be created in all corners for concerted efforts of coordinated development for all. Thus the importance of environmental education, training and networking has been emphasized for sustainable development. Suggestions have been sorted out from the discussions and findings of this paper to implement some urgent as well as innovative policies by the government, non-government organizations and international agencies.

Environment and Mental Health : Understanding the Dynamics Through a Few Cases of College and University students
Mohmmad Mahmudur Rahman, Nusrat Sharmin,
Zeenat Shams, Ayesha Ameen
Department of Clinical Psychology, University of Dhaka

Although is has been well documented that man is a product of heredity and environment, but the real meaning of the environment in Behaviourist tradition is poorly understood. Early developments in Environmental Psychology (e.p.) has attempted to understand the environment in terms of its spatio-physical characteristics, while there is a growing attention to the psycho-social dimension of the environment in recent times-. The field of Clinical Psychology (c.p.) has long tradition in trying to understand people's mental health, the emphasis of which has recently been shifted towards more internal psychological processes, like cognitions and emotions. But there is an enormous possibility of integration between these two fields of Environmental Psychology (e.p.) and Clinical Psychology (c.p.), in understanding the relation between environment and people's mental health, through the understanding the dynamics of relationship between the external environmental dimensions (e.g, physical and social environment) and internal psychological factors of the individual (e.g., developmental factors, mental health factors, and individual's level of social and occupational functioning). One such model outlining the relation between the environment and mental health will be proposed, and several cases of college and university students will be presented to explore the dynamics of relationship between various dimensions, factors of environment and mental health. The paper also attempts to formulate some measures for the promotion of mental health of the students based on the proposed model.


Organizational Environment and Mental Health in Residential Homes
Urmi Rahman, Salma Parveen and Mohammad Mahmudur Rahman
Department of Clinical Psychology
University of Dhaka

Any Organization can be considered as a man-made micro-environment, which has physical, social and psychological dimensions. All these dimensions separately, as well as together, determine the quality of the environment, which can remarkably influence the mental health of the inmates in residential homes. In this- paper we will summarize our observations and experiences in few residential homes, where we will attempt to identify some crucial factors and processes contributing to the mental health of the inmates, as well as, the mental health of the staff/managers and the directors/ organizers of the organization. Based on the summary of such observations, we will also try to formulate few recommendations for policy level changes required, for the improvement of the environmental quality of the organization, which will ensure the mental health, of the both inmates and the staff/ managers along with the directors/organizers.

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(BPA & SAAP Con. 2001)
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