For a day, teachers and staff of the Ateneo de Naga Grade School and Junior High School received coaching on techniques to wellbeing and sound mental health from a renowned clinical psychologist last October 6, 2018 at the Arrupe Convention Hall of the Ateneo de Naga University Main Campus.

In a brief seminar-workshop organized by the AJHS Office of the Principal, Dr. Tita Agravante-Go, a former professor of the Ateneo de Manila University and Ateneo de Naga University, discussed to the attendees the manifestations, effects, and importance of mental health awareness.

“In these changing times, awareness of mental health is terribly necessary. The fast pace of the world boosted by the ‘needs’ and ‘wants’ created by social media have such tremendous effects on the present generation of students. Their mentors need to adjust in this setup,” Ms. Fatima May Alarcon, Director of Guidance said. The Guidance Department of the Junior High School and the Office of the Assistant Principal for Formation and Student Affairs assisted in organizing the event.

Among the activities following the discussion on wellbeing were workshops on identifying stress level and techniques on coping up with stresses in work. Participants did coloring exercises to relax, and did laughter yoga to combat depression and physical effects of stress.

Dr. Go said, “Today, we have heard and seen an increasing number of suicides, not only in the Philippines, but in the rest of the world. This is alarming, and this increase in number calls for awareness of mental health.”

A large part of the seminar discussed to the basic education mentors the significance of promoting wellness by always having positive feelings, engagement with endeavors and the outside world, nurturing interpersonal relationships, finding meaning in undertakings, and developing a sense of achievement.

Ms. Nanet Tria, Assistant Principal for Formation and Student Affairs said, “wellbeing and mental health is connected with the school’s core value of ‘cura personalis’ or personal care to students. At the end of the day, how can we be good mentors when we cannot take care of ourselves?” (M.Tatel)