Mental health training pathway for public professionals

Human resources training Public professionals Strategic promotion

Project start date: November 2022

Partner: Vetor Brasil


The Cactus Institute and Vetor Brasil have collaborated to create a mental health training course as part of the Public Professionals Development Program (Jornada de Desenvolvimento de Profissionais Públicos), designed for middle-management professionals in the public sector across various government portfolios and levels.

Over the course of five months, the Jornada aims to bolster the development of public professionals, empowering them to strengthen their roles within the government and form teams capable of addressing the diverse public challenges present in our society. This is achieved through training programs that enhance essential skills required for effective public sector work. In collaboration with the Cactus Institute, the Jornada also integrates the critical theme of mental health.

As a partner in developing the project and crafting the content, as well as providing training for the Mental Health Pathway, the Cactus Institute’s goal is to equip public managers with tools that broaden and deepen their understanding of the crossover and intersectoral aspects of mental health.

By offering a combination of asynchronous and synchronous, online and in-person mental health content, the Mental Health Pathway is designed to deliver mental health knowledge applicable to individual experiences, interpersonal relationships, and public policies. In doing so, it seeks to provide resources for a comprehensive understanding of the significance of mental health, at the personal and the collective level. The two main focus areas are as follows:

– Mental Health for You and Your Teams: Covering topics such as self-awareness, self-care, self-management, emotional intelligence, healthy interpersonal relationships, and mental health strategies for teams.

– Mental Health in Public Policies: Encompassing key definitions, existing structures, intersectoral mental health approaches, mental health care, promotion, and exploring the role of public leaders in the mental health agenda.


  • More than 18 hours of asynchronous materials designed to train public professionals in the field of mental health.
  • More than 10 hours of synchronous content built for the mental health pathway.
  • The 2023 edition of the program had 40 participants, with a majority of women (57.5%), and racial equality (50% white, 22.5% black and 22.5% mixed race). The majority of the professionals, 95%, work in the executive branch, with 5% in the judiciary. 
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