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Center for Psychosocial Care (CAPsi)

The Center for Psychosocial Care (CAPsi) is a place for education, research and intervention that responds to mental health and social exclusion issues in the at-risk population of our city. Its main objectives are: to offer a free-of-charge, professional psychological care service which is oriented towards socially and economically vulnerable populations; and to educate the students of the undergraduate Psychology Program in clinical and community interventions.


About CAPSi

sobre capsiIcesi University, interested in contributing to overcoming the numerous problems of exclusion that exist in our region, created the Center of Psychosocial Care (CAPsi). This offer is based on the acknowledged fact that social exclusion is associated with the weakening of social bonds and the subsequent suffering.

CAPsi offers a place that focuses on listening and on psychological orientation in order to create a process of social inclusion and consolidation of social relationships in people confronted with the violation of their fundamental rights.

This place also provides an opportunity to further the education of the Psychology students of Icesi. They have the chance to get a first insight into clinical-community work, in a program which distances itself from other interventions in mental health, which are focused on adaptive conditioning and generalized medicalization. The psychological intervention offered by CAPsi focuses on the subject´s personal history and responsibility, as well as the process of social rehabilitation, avoiding diagnostic classification, segregation and stigmatization.

General objective:
To establish and facilitate a place of education, research, and psycho-social intervention that responds to the issues of mental health and social exclusion of at-risk population of the region.

Specific objectives:

• To offer professional service of attention, orientation, and psychological intervention to economically and socially vulnerable populations.

• To educate students in psychological interventions within the clinical area of the Psychology Program and of the research projects of the Psychological Studies Department.

• To encourage projects and activities in cooperation with the Legal Clinic and the Group of Public Actions of Icesi (GAPI), creating spaces for discussion and interdisciplinary work.

• To promote discussion and debate about public policies in the field of mental health, becoming an academic forum with local recognition.

• To make the Icesi Psychology Program visible, strengthening its presence in various social and institutional sectors of the city and contributing to the implementation of the policy of corporate social responsibility.

At-risk population: People from the socioeconomic stratum 1, 2 and 3; displaced persons; victims of all forms of violence; people with disabilities; older adults.

Community Work

accion comunitariaThis line of action encourages the formulation mental health promotion and prevention programs in cooperation with communities andgovernmental and non-governmental organizations that already have an established line of work in a community or wish to initiate a process of psychosocial intervention. These programs have a collective approach without losing sight of the individual, generating processes of social inclusion and strengthening of the social bonds of people living in situations where their wellbeing is compromised.

The prevention projects and programs are designed in response to the specific needs and the request of the community or organization, the context, and the problems. Problems with a high rate of occurrence in at risk population will be prioritized, such as: forced displacement, substance abuse, various forms of violence, and early pregnancy in adolescents.

In-progress intervention programs:
Clinical-community project with older adults of the Comuna 21
Beginning in March of 2015, we have been working with the “Paz y Bien” Foundation, located in the Marroquín II neighborhood of Cali, collaborating with its “jueves de paz” (Thursday of Peace) project. This project is aimed at older adults from various parts of the country, victims of the armed conflict and forced displacement. The Center of Psychosocial Care (CAPsi)’s contribution, specifically towards people from Nariño, is derived from a diagnosed need for projects that allow social inclusion of these older adults, highly vulnerable both due to displacement from their homeland and exclusion from opportunities in the city, as well as the absence of appropriate Government support. After a characterization of the population, interviews and focal groups, CAPsi has proposed the following main objectives: instilling the possibility of the creation of a life plan by each of the group’s members, simultaneously allowing the creation of new support networks amongst peers. Therefore, with the clinical-community perspective (which intends to preserve the individual and allow her/him to develop personal resources to reduce suffering) that serves as our basis, we’ve proposed methodological and intervention tools designed for work with this population.
Coordinator: Professor Ximena Castro

Project “Damage reduction with drug users” in Comunas 18 and 20
In cooperation with the ESE Ladera, we are implementing a project with the objective of transforming the perceptions and attitudes of the professional and administrative staff of this Health Center towards drug users.
Coordinator: Professor Omar Bravo

Community mental health project in the El Guabal village, Corregimiento de Guachené, Departamento of Cauca (2014)
This project had participation of Eigth-semester Psychology students, who provided accompaniment to projects created by students of the Public Health course of the Medicine program of Icesi University.

Researchers and students from the Program of Anthropology also participated in the project.
The objective of the first phase of the project was to introduce the psycho-social perspective in community intervention processes with adolescents, youth and adults of this village. The village gets support from the Propal Foundation.
Coordinator: Professor Ana Lucía Sánchez.

Psychological Care

atencion psicologicaIn an atmosphere of trust, respect, and with the accompaniment of a psychologist, the CAPsi offers a space where people can talk about the issues that make them suffer and where they can reflect on their conflicts. Listening and counseling is incorporated so that each person, from their individual and cultural particularities, can build possible solutions to their problems and alleviate their suffering. The service is available for children, adolescents, adults, and elderly people that come from the socioeconomic stratum 1, 2 and 3; It is a process of individual listening with limited duration. CAPsi also offers the possibility of referral to other specialized services if necessary. (Directory of Institutions)

This line of CAPsi’s action also offers psychological support services in legal proceedings, addressing issues such as family and interpersonal conflicts, which result in suffering and go beyond the judicial competence. This line of action includes support and crisis intervention in conciliation processes, as well as workshops for the clients of the Office and the law students, according to the personal needs they manifest.

programa atencion psicosocial victimasProgram of psycho-social assistance for victims.
The victims of armed conflict, forced relocation and of other types of social and family violence, particularly women, children and adolescents, comprise the priority group of the psycho-social and community interventions of the CAPsi today.

Starting off our second year of operation, we are interested in focusing our psycho-social and community interventions on victims of the armed conflict, contributing to their social integration. It is a well-known fact that the city of Cali receives a significant amount of victims that come from the Pacific region and the south-west of the country. Despite political good intentions and the existence of a legal framework to attend the needs of this population, the health services are insufficient in the face of the complexity of the problems and the urgency of the needs of the victims. This is the reason for our interest in strategic cooperation with international, national, and local entities.

Based on our experiences and profiting from the expert knowledge of our team of psychologists and university professors, we are capable of designing and executing projects in the following areas:

• Counseling and supervision for healthcare professionals, specifically those in the area of mental health, in order to improve the quality of the assistance provided to victims.
• Design, evaluation, and monitoring of short-term, individual and group attended psychological attention mechanisms, based on detailed analysis of the population’s requests, the feasibility, and social and institutional sustainability.
• Direct assistance and psycho-social support for victims through supervised therapeutic support and responsible referrals.
• Design, implementation, and evaluation of health promotion and prevention projects, such as family, school, and juvenile violence prevention, substance abuse prevention, and early pregnancy prevention.

Psychological Brigades
brigadas psicologicasThrough this line of action, CAPsi gets even closer to the communities. With a group of volunteer psychologists, in site psychological support is provided in the neighborhoods of the city, by collaborating with other community organizations, schools or governmental and non-governmental organizations. CAPsi also cooperates with other organizations in order to design a psychological support and listening mechanism for emergency situations that can respond to crises, whether it be public unrest or natural disasters.



Mental Health Forum

foro salud mentalThis forum is a place for debate and academic exchange of ideas, opinions, and theoretical and practical aspects of the public policies on the matter of mental health. The forum consists of discussion and study groups comprised by professors and undergraduate and graduate students interested in the field of Mental Health. Likewise, academic and/or key figures involved in the construction and implementation of these policies are invited. The discussions and conclusions of the Forum are published via the CAPsi website.

Título: Foro internacional políticas en salud mental e intervención psicosocial
Link: http://new.livestream.com/accounts/2541970/icesi/videos/58636673

 Participation in events:
-“La supervisión clínica en el CAPsi como buena práctica docente”, Ximena Castro 
II Encuentro de Buenas Prácticas Docentes, Universidad Icesi. Cali, 28 de agosto de 2015

-“La utilidad social de la escucha: sobre la experiencia del CAPsi”, Ximena Castro
Foro Internacional en salud mental e intervención psicosocial. Universidad Icesi, Cali, 30 y 31 de julio de 2014

-“Psicosis y atención primaria: la experiencia del CAPsi”, Ximena Castro
Brain Festival, Universidad Icesi. Cali, abril 29 de 2015

-“Subjetividad y lazo social: hacia un modelo de atención clínico-comunitario”, Ximena Castro
Foro Internacional en salud mental e intervención psicosocial, Universidad Icesi. Cali, 8 de agosto de 2014

Published articles:
Autor: Ximena Castro y Margarita Munévar
Título: Consultorio de Atención Psicosocial (CAPsi):Clínica y Lazo Social
Link: http://colpsic.org.co/aym_image/files/EXPERIENCIAS_SIGNIFICATIVAS.pdf 

Autor: Ximena Castro 
Título: El Psicoanálisis y la Universidad. Hacia la invención de un dispositivo de formación e intervención en salud mental. 

Autores: Ximena Castro y Margarita Munévar 
Título: ¿Nuevo panorama en la atención de la Salud Mental en Colombia? 
Link: http://www.funlam.edu.co/revistas/index.php/poiesis/article/view/1204/1141

Autor: Ximena Castro
Título: El cuerpo en la época de la tecnociencia: una aproximación psicoanalítica.
Link: http://www.uff.br/periodicoshumanas/index.php/ecos/article/view/1558/1156

Autor: Ximena Castro
Título: Laurent, E. (2013) La batalla del autismo. De la clínica a la política. (Reseña)
Link: http://www.icesi.edu.co/revista_cs/images/cs_13/13._Rese%C3%B1as.pdf

Autor: Ximena Castro 
Título: Salud mental sin sujeto. Sobre la expulsión de la subjetividad de las prácticas actuales en salud mental. 
Link: http://www.icesi.edu.co/revistas/index.php/revista_cs/article/viewFile/1567/2038

Autor: Omar Bravo 
Título: Tratamiento penitenciario, salud mental y ciudadanía. Desafíos para la democracia y la ciudadanía.

Autor: Omar Bravo 
Título: Trauma, memoria, justicia y reparación. 
Link: http://www.funlam.edu.co/revistas/index.php/poiesis/article/view/222/206 

Autor: Omar Bravo 
Título: Las prisiones de la locura. La construcción institucional del preso psiquiátrico (Libro)

Autor: Omar Bravo 
Título: La difícil y necesaria integración entre la atención básica y la salud mental en Brasil.
Link: http://rcientificas.uninorte.edu.co/index.php/psicologia/article/viewFile/624/807


Directory of Institutions
This directory of governmental, non-governmental, and private institutions was created with the aim of providing the community with a means to find all the information they need in one place, such as information about different mental health services, specialized services for elderly people, victims of family violence, people in situations of neglect, displacement, etc. The user can find the address, the phone number, and information about the type of services that these institutions offer.






CAPsi is open Monday through Friday from 2:00pm to 6:00pm

phone (57+2) 882 10 93 - Extension 101

dir Carrera 9 No. 9 – 49 Second Floor
     Cali / Colombia

To request assistance, make an appointment by phone or in person.


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informe actividades 2014 2016