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Ilocos Norte's "Speak up, I'm here" campaign to address mental health concerns amidst pandemic

by PGIN-CMO

Sep. 23, 2020 ...

The Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte (PGIN), through the initiative of Governor Matthew Marcos Manotoc, will be launching its "Speak up, I'm here" Mental Health Movement to help address the increasing number of psychological-related incidents in the province.

The movement is created due to consecutive suicide-related cases reported in these past months. According to the Ilocos Norte Police Provincial Office, there is a 32% increase in suicide incidents compared to their August 2019 data.

"Speak up, I'm here" aims to expand the service delivery network to address mental health issues, encourage positive psychological practices, try to prevent suicide and improve mental health situations, and decrease mental health-related incidents.

On October 1, the implementing offices, the Communications and Media Office, the Ilocos Norte Youth Development Office, Gender and Development Office, and the Provincial Public Employment Service Office will commence series of activities under the movement.

These include face-to-face consultations, uploading videos on mental health, symposia or webinars, and opening a 24/7 hotline service for residents who seek professional mental advice.

Moreover, a mental health center will be put up in the Gov. Roque B. Ablan Sr. Memorial Hospital to provide psychological consultations to in-patients, especially those who tested positive for COVID-19.

The Provincial Government will launch a helpline to make mental health support services more accessible and available. Along with this, PGIN will be partnering with certified counseling professionals across the province to be part of the helpline team and administer psychological crisis interventions.

"Let's lend a helping hand while we can...Let's look after all of those around us This is a dark time for some people, but rest assured that there are sunny days ahead. To everyone, kapit lang, kaya natin 'to. This too shall pass," Governor Manotoc said.