KINGSTON, Jamaica. October 12, 2022. The Community Mental Health Services (CMHS) of the South East Regional Health Authority (SERHA) has staged several sessions for students, staff, police and other members of the general public to raise awareness about mental illnesses and ways in which individuals can promote good mental health. The face-to-face sessions are part of the activities to mark Mental Health Week, which is being observed from October 9-17.
Considering the enormity of the negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the mental well-being of the populous, a webinar is also planned on Thursday, October 13, 2022 under the topic “Make Mental Health For All A Global Priority: Responding To Challenges Post Covid-19.”
Ms. Luraine Brown, Regional Community Mental Health Officer, Kingston and St. Andrew Health Department (KSAHD), said that the webinar will ramp up continued sensitization of the nation of the importance of taking the necessary steps to manage their mental health and well-being and to educate persons about mental illness in order to decrease the stigma and discrimination that permeates society in this regard.
She added that the webinar will enable and embolden persons who are affected to feel free to visit their health care providers to access the service that is free and widely available at the government health care facilities across the island.
Speaking during a mental health exercise session with grade 6 students at the Rollington Town Primary on Tuesday, October 11, 2022, Mrs. Angela Senior-Wilson, Mental Health/Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, KSAHD, said that teachers and guidance counsellors should listen more to the concerns of the students. She also encouraged the students to get enough rest, eat healthily, take study break, create a timetable to manage their time, participate in physical activities and speak to someone who they can trust about personal issues in order to maintain their mental health.
“You should prioritize your mental health. There is no good health without mental health,” Mrs. Wilson stated.
Mrs. Angela Senior-Wilson, Mental Health/Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, Kingston and St. Andrew Health Department, addresses Grade 6 students at the Rollington Town Primary School in Kingston about the importance of mental health. She was speaking during a mental health exercise to observe Mental Health Week.