Mental health awareness is the ongoing effort to reduce the stigma around mental illness health conditions by sharing our personal experiences. Often, because of misconceptions about mental health and fitness, people often suffer in silence and their conditions go untreated. Due to the outbreak of the coronavirus disease in 2019, the pandemic affected the psychosocial wellbeing of children and adolescents. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), one in five adults have had or currently have symptoms of a mental illness. Hence, it is very important to talk openly and publicly about such issues. Spreading awareness can impact someone’s life in a very positive manner. It leads to a healthy and happy life, enabling them to successfully overcome difficulties and achieve what they want. Since adolescence is an age when there is a sudden and rapid physical and mental change, it makes them very self-conscious, sensitive, and worried. Proper guidance about mental wellbeing plays a crucial role.
A Life Skills, Health & Wellness awareness training program was conducted by CBSE for schools across India and MIT Vishwashanti Gurukul School, Kothrud enrolled in the program along with 2400+ schools. One of the expert trainers rightly told us that mental well-being awareness is not something which needs to be taught as these are inherent and hence just need to be made aware.
Being a pupil of MIT VGS Kothrud, I, Madhura Sonawane, a student of grade 9 was nominated as the peer educator for the training program. I was really excited for the journey to know more about human psychology. At the end of the training session, my self awareness grew and I wanted to start working on a better version of myself. The training focused on various themes such as Health, hygiene and nutrition, family communications and relationships, positive and negative peer pressure, cyber security, effective career choices and emotions with help of various activities conducted during the session. Moreover, it helped in improving problem solving skills, self-awareness, decision making skills, critical thinking, coping with stress and emotions and creative thinking.
The training suggested that to make people and adolescents more aware of mental and well-being, various interactive sessions, street plays and short documentaries can be planned in schools and colleges. As a trained peer educator, it’s my responsibility to prepare a plan of action for the successful implementation of Life Skills, Health and Well Being in and around the school through various interactive sessions and activities. I would like to assist everyone that I can in their problems and openly talk about various peer problems. It is widely quoted by Dean Burnett- “Awareness is great, but action is essential.”
Madhura Sonawane, Grade 9 Alpha