As part of its effort to create mental health awareness across Oyo state, a counseling clinic, Sure Hope Counselling Clinic, in conjunction with Hope For Pre-Teens, Teens, Youth And The Vulnerable Ones Initiative, has taken her mental health campaign to Eleyele Motor Park in Ibadan, the state capital.
The mental health awareness campaign for the members of the National Union Of Road Transport Workers, (NURTW) took place on Thursday, at the Eleyele Motor Park, Ibadan.
The Lead Counsellor at Sure Hope Counseling Clinic, Oluwatosin Togun, said the campaign was organized to educate transport workers on what mental health is and how to deal with mental health issues when faced.
She said: “Listening to news every now and then, I see the rate at which is heightened and people barely know what mental health is. They only understand when they have physical health problems, they don’t know if they are having mental health challenges or not. Hence, one of the common mental health problem is depression and anxiety, people are not aware of it. They don’t even know if they are experiencing it or the name it is called.
“It so bad that people keep it to themselves and before you know it, it goes from stage one to stage two to stage three and before you know it, people reach a point of suicide.
“If you look around Ibadan today you will see a lot of young people who have reached the point of insanity, then you begin to wonder how did they get there? They all get there because they are not aware of their mental health challenges that’s why we are bringing it to this place. We want them to know that mental health challenges are different from insanity.
“We decided to come to motor park here because often times we hear different stories about drivers will place their head on their steering and die, so many of them have a lot of health challenges that they don’t pay attention to, they are physically stress. If you take a look at the fuel issues now, they are most affected by this situation. We see that the rate of suicide is becoming alarming among them, a number of them are depressed, hence the need why we came here, we will take it to different local governments and around Oyo state.”
Reacting to the mental health awareness campaign, a member of the NURTW, Amzat Abiola, said,
“I appreciate the organizers of this awareness programme as it enlightens us about our mental health, most of us are passing through this mental health ignorantly, but with what they have brought to us we have been taught how to manage it and take care of ourselves.”
Also, another member, Ademola Kayode, also said: “we appreciate Sure Hope Clinic for deeming it fit to come teach us all of these things, most especially during this time when the country is not economically stable.
“Mental health challenges are caused by a lot of things, take for instance, the fuel scarcity, a lot of people can’t go anywhere, a lot of people are stranded and broke which are all affecting the mental health. The government is causing a lot to our mental health, so we need them to help us”
Other highlights of the programme includes the checking of blood pressures and counselling services to transport workers.