The NGO Committee on Mental Health was established in 1996 in collaboration with the Conference of Non-Governmental Organizations (CoNGO), a coalition of NGOs in Consultative Status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council. The creation of this Committee has fostered a strong collaboration between NGOs that has strengthened the efforts to bring understanding and appreciation of Mental Health issues to the global agenda at the United Nations.

The primary mission of the Committee is the promotion of psychosocial well-being, the improvement of mental health care services, and advocacy and education in the prevention and treatment of mental illness. The Committee works with the United Nations, and its specialized agencies, to ensure the inclusion of mental health issues within a broader context of concerns such as vulnerable populations, human rights, poverty, violence, the environment, peace and well-being.