The emergence of COVID-19 in Nigeria has negatively affects the economy of the nation.  In January 2020 the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the outbreak of a new coronavirus disease, COVID-19, to be a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. WHO stated that there is a high risk of COVID-19 spreading to other countries around the world. In March 2020, WHO made the assessment that COVID-19 can be characterized as a pandemic. However, this time of crisis is generating stress throughout the population. The considerations presented in this document have been developed by the WHO Department of Mental Health and Substance Use as a series of messages that can be used in communications to support mental and psychosocial well-being in different target groups during the outbreak.

There is a neuropsychiatric linkage between the outbreak of acute respiratory infections and mental disorders which date back to the prevalence of influenza and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) that took place years ago. Individuals in quarantine areas may experience boredom, anger, and loneliness; the symptoms of the viral infection such as cough and fever may also cause worsening cognitive distress and anxiety among people due to the fear of contracting the COVID-19. During the early phase of the manifestation of SARS, several psychiatric comorbidities such as depression, panic attack, anxiety, psychomotor excitement, suicidality, delirium, and psychotic symptoms were reported

The need for both universal and targeted mitigation of COVID-19’s psychosocial impacts is arising in the context of a very brittle Nigerian mental health system. A parity struggle continues for emotional well-being to secure the same importance, service capacity and financing structures as physical health. There is a shortage of mental health professionals, and many Nigerians forego help because of cost, stigma and not knowing how to plug in. Such flaws require long-term systemic change. Nevertheless, decision makers, providers and communities can still act now to help alleviate pandemic-induced emotional distress. More so, in order to reduce the widespread of the virus among the populace the government has directed a mandatory self-isolation and social distancing by all.

The thrust of the competition is examine the perception of the general public towards the mental health and psychosocial To measure the public perception of the situation with Corona virus in Nigeria with focus on mental health and the impacts of social distancing, educate the public about the need to protect their mental health as well as to meaningfully engage the public on social media, as part MHEI Sensitization program we are launching an essay writing competition where the public under the age of 15-25 will write and or talk about how the global pandemic is affecting mental health, and how social distancing is impacting our social interactions.  


  1. To explore the creativity of young minds about writing in the field of mental health and psychosocial issues
  2. To Sensitized the public on mental health care during the COVID-19 pandemic
  3. To create a public awareness on the impact of COVID-19 on Mental health and psychosocial issues
  4. To increases the knowledge of the people about the importance of mental health during an outbreak
  5. To establish platform for individuals to talk about mental health and psychosocial issues

 Topic:                         COVID-19: Mental health and Psychosocial Perspectives

Number of Words:    Minimum of 1200 and Maximum of 1500 

Criteria for selection:

  • Eligible Countries: Submissions are only accepted from Nigeria
  • Admissible Criteria: To be eligible, applicants must have to meet the following criteria:
  • An essay must have a word count of 1200-1500 words (excluding title, header, and works cited page)
  • Be written in the US or UK English
  • Be 100% plagiarism-free
  • Be submitted in .doc or .docx format
  • Follow Harvard style of referencing to format the paper and cite sources (download our MLA checklist to check your formatting)
  • The filename should be [ Contest_Last Name]


Cash Prices, 5 Month Internet Subscription, Bluetooth headphones, PowerBank, and Lot of Recharge Cards

Deadline: Entries must be received by April 29th, 2020 (23:59 your local time).

Consequently, the organization will provide grants to the first top 3 persons to assist them to carry out Specialized Mental Health online sensitization or otherwise that will improve public literacy and understanding about the ongoing COVID-19 situation and associated mental health conditions especially at the local level. Overall, this competition will increase awareness about the understanding of mental health conditions during local, national and global crisis within urban and rural communities, while creating preventive, treatment and care solutions to the issue of panic, anxiety, stress and depression rising as a result of the COVID-19 situation. 


Thank you for your Interest in the Essay Competition 

Registration and Submission is closed.