Psychologists in Mental Health Awareness Drive
Chancellor College staff often take their work extremely seriously, ensuring that their mandate to educate the public is not only restricted to the classroom. It is with this attitude that members of staff in the psychology department at the college decided to hold a Mental Health Awareness Campaign, which is running from 18th to 23rd February, 2018. Everyday during this week, the staff members, accompanied by some volunteering 3rd and 4th year Psychology majors, have been camping on the quadrangle outside the library, providing information to any students who may be curious about mental health. There is also a box available for students who may wish to ask questions in anonymity. The psychologists have also been handing out questionnaires, as part of the effort to gauge the level of knowledge of mental health among students. The questionnaires seek to find out students’ attitudes towards mental health.
According to the Head of Psychology Department, Mrs. Tilinao Lamba, the overall aim of the campaign is to find out the attitude that students have with regard to mental health, and to inform those students of avenues available at the college should they wish to discuss matters of mental health.
“To teach them of the importance of mental health,” says Lamba. “Many students have mental health problems, but they often don’t know who to talk to. We therefore thought this would be a good forum to inform them that there is a support system in place. This support system includes the office of the College Counsellor, the Dean of Students Office, the Assistant Registrar (Student Welfare), and members of staff in the Psychology department.”
As part of the information drive, the psychologists have been pinning green ribbons on people’s chests. According to Lamba, the green ribbon is an international symbol of mental health, drawing its origins from Medieval Europe, where people with mental health problems were required to wear green. However, in modern times, people wear the green ribbon as a way of showing support for mental health. It is her hope that at Chancellor College, the ribbon shall be a conversation starter, though the piquing of people’s curiosity.
The campaign is also being supported by the Arts and Global Health Centre (AGHCA).