Improving Adolescent mentaL health by reducing the Impact of poverty (ALIVE)


Depression and anxiety are leading contributors to the burden of disease among adolescents in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC), and they disproportionally affect adolescents living in poverty. Yet, the evidence base for interventions that effectively prevent depression and anxiety among adolescents living in poverty is weak. One major shortcoming is that interventions often fail to address poverty-related social determinants of mental health and neuropsychological consequences of poverty (such as impaired self-regulation). Henceforth, ALIVE aims to develop and pilot-test an intervention that equips adolescents with skills to escape poverty and strengthens self-regulation, thus preventing adolescent depression and anxiety in urban LMIC settings. ALIVE is a 5-year project funded by Wellcome Trust UK which is being implemented in Nepal, Colombia, and South Africa. It is led by King’s College London, London, United Kingdom.


  • To develop a theoretical model of the causal mechanisms linking poverty, self-regulation, and depression and anxiety among adolescents (age 10-19 years);
  • To collaboratively develop a multi-component selective prevention intervention targeting self-regulation and skills for academic and employment success among adolescents at high risk of developing depression or anxiety living in urban poverty in Colombia, Nepal and South Africa;
  • To adapt and validate key instruments to measure eligibility, implementation, mediators, and outcomes of the intervention; and
  • To undertake a 4-arm pilot randomized controlled trial of the selective prevention intervention in each site.

Target group: ALIVE targets adolescents (ages 10-19) living in urban poverty and who are at high risk of depression and anxiety.

Implementation area: In Nepal, ALIVE will be implemented in poverty affected settings in Kathmandu valley.

Time frame: Five years (15 Nov 2021 to 14 Oct 2026)

Supported by: Wellcome Trust UK, London

Partners: King’s College London, Universidad de Los Andes – Bogota, TPO Nepal, University of Cape Town, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, University of Copenhagen, George Washington University

Head Office
  • Baluwatar, Kathmandu, Nepal
  • G.P.O Box 8974/C.P.C. Box 612
  • +977-01-4531717/4537124/4524082
Toll Free Number
1660 010 2005
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Please call this number for psychosocial support and counseling/consultation. You can call this number free of cost from Nepal Telecom network.

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