SOCH mental health workshops for South Asians make a difference

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SOCH (Supporting our Community’s Health) is an initiative started by Jasmeet Chagger and Maneet Chahal in 2015 to educate the South Asian community about mental health.

SOCH has hosted monthly workshops in Punjabi at community centres and Gurdwaras in Brampton and will be hosting workshops at the Cyril Clark Library in Brampton on the following dates:
-Feb 24th: Healing through Art (A Hands-On Approach)
-March 10th: Understanding Borderline Personality Disorder
-March 31st: Stress- How to Help Yourself (A Hands-On Approach)

In an interview with Can-India, Jasmeet who is a nurse working with the Canadian Mental Health Association Peel Dufferin’s Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) team said that the idea was to address the issue by holding workshops. “In general, there is a lot of stigma but in the last two years, we find more people in the community willing to talk about it and demand for more workshops is growing. Mental health affects people of all ages including children and seniors” she says.

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The word “Soch” in Hindi and Punjabi which means, “thought.”

Jasmeet has realized that awareness of mental health is very poor among South Asians. “Because it is a taboo subject, few take the trouble to find out more about the issue and know little or nothing about the resources available to them. Furthermore, a lack of culturally relevant information makes it harder for family members to help a loved one suffering a form of mental illness,” she says.

The idea behind these workshops is to reach out and educate the community that there is no shame in admitting to a mental health crisis and seeking help. -CINEWS

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