On the occasion of Mental Health Day which is observed on 10th October every year, an activity was carried out at Kolegaon centre. Starting a day before, the Kolegaon youth met at the centre on 9th October to discuss and articulate their thoughts on mental health. Through hand-made posters and charts, the youth highlighted the impact of disasters on collective and community mental health. They took into account the social, political, gender, caste, class, age and various nuances of disasters. 

“वंचित घटक हे खूप पूर्वीपासून कष्टाचे काम करत आलेले आहेत त्यामुळे त्या मानसिक तणावात जगत असतात कधी कमी प्रमाणात तर  कधी मोठ्या प्रमाणात तसेच किशोर वयात असताना मानसिक ताणाचे परिणाम फार दिसतात कारण या वयात आपण आपले समस्या कोणाला सांगावे हा प्रश्न त्यांच्यासमोर असतो त्याच बरोबर समाजानेही हिन समजलेले घटक म्हणजेच स्री कोणत्याही परिस्थितीत तिच्यावर लादलेले काम असो किंवा संस्कार असो तिला ते कोणत्याही परिस्थितीत पार पाडावे लागते त्यामुळे स्त्री ही खूप मानसिक आजाराचे लवकर शिकार बनते”, shared by a participant. After much brainstorming, the youth came up with multiple recommendations, which include:

1. Weekly Mental health counseling and awareness in communities,

2. Psychiatric and counseling OPDs to be made available in Govt hospitals.

3. Helpline numbers for youth with ground perspective.  

Mental Justice session with students, parents and teachers of RVE School, Goregaon: As part of Anubhuti’s work towards #mentaljustice, an online session was held to interact with the students of RVE School, Goregaon. Earlier in July, Deepa Pawar the founder of Anubhuti had addressed teachers on the topic of dealing with their own and students’ mental health during times of COVID. While speaking about the COVID crisis, a section which got almost no attention was that of school going adolescents. The out-going kids were suddenly asked to stay home for more than 6-8 months. This isolated them into a confined space leading to mental disturbance. Adding to this challenge, the online education system further tested their concentration span with the sudden change of study environment. The children belonging to those families who had to migrate to other areas, faced a lot of issues related to their admissions and schooling. Not just migration and educational changes but also career guidance and parent-child relationships took a turn. This session became more insightful when Deepa Pawar answered varied questions asked by the students and teachers. The Q&A round covered topics like making online classes interactive, improving parent-child relationships, dealing with stress, counselling the kids etc. 

Then in October, a session on career guidance for school students were held by Anubhuti and career counselor Mr. Chandrakant Munde was the resource person. He guided the students on how to study well and identify one’s interests to help them select a career path. He suggested various career options one can explore after 10th and 12th std. He emphasized on various competitive exams and also conveyed the ethics and norms to get through such exams.