NSTP, Sandiwa, and COED organize a Mental Health Webinar-Campaign

Jannette Princess Hinate, Diane Justine Dime, News, Communication Management Office

The PUP National Service Training Program (NSTP) and Samahang Nagtataguyod ng Iisang Diwa’t Adhika (Sandiwa), in collaboration with the College of Education (CoEd), held the second webinar forum of AKSYON KABATAAN: Amplifying Youth’s Civic Role in Nation-Building through Community Education titled “TAKING OFF THE MASK: Breaking Silence on Mental Health” on May 9, 2021. 

With more than 180 participating schools and universities, week two of the webinar series aimed to create a safe and healthy discourse about mental health issues. The webinar was divided into two parts: “Common Mental Health Concerns Among the Youth” and “Ways and Procedures on How to Deal with Mental Health Issues” discussed by Prof. Charlon Agos and Dr. Gary C. Dy respectively. 

In his presentation, Professor Agos clarified the thin line between mental illness and mental health. “When we talked about our mental health, we’re talking about our well-being: our emotions, our thoughts, and feelings, our ability to solve problems and overcome difficulties, our social connections, and our understanding of the world around us. A mental illness is an illness that affects the way people think, feel, behave, or interact with others,” he explained.

Meanwhile, Dr. Dy encouraged the participants to ask for professional help rather than having self-diagnosis. He furthermore laid out the danger by explaining the possibilities of missing the nuances of the diagnosis, the subtleties that the diagnosis constitutes, and undermining the role of the doctor which could end up creating problems that do not exist in the first place.

Eugene Cabatac, one of the participants noted that there is a fine line between depression and sadness, and we should not self-diagnose regardless of our will to understand ourselves rather, seek help, preferably from the experts. “The problem for most of us is we tend to use such complicated and technical terms like depression and anxiety without really understanding its nature. We value everyone’s feelings, but we should not be based solely on what we read online,” he added.

In his message, University President Dr. Manuel Muhi said that he also believes that the strength of our country lies in how we develop our youth with the right education and values. To support this, the NSTP Director Dr. Rovelina Jacolbia, emphasized in her opening remarks that “Youth, nowadays, possess intelligence and skills that will take our country into its next level of success. As they are being more aware of what is happening, the wiser they become in scrutinizing the actions being taken by the society surrounding them.” She also added that to achieve this, one must recognize his/her identity first by prioritizing and dealing with his/her mental health. 

The third part of the webinar titled “YAKAP TANGGAP: Breaking Barriers Towards Gender Equality” will be held on May 16, 2021, from 9:00 AM to 12:00 NN.


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