FLO Hyderabad chapter launches a yearlong Mental Health campaign #ReachOut

Hyderabad, July, 2020: FICCI FLO Hyderabad chapter organized a panel discussion on positive mental health titled ‘There is always somebody.’ShikhaGoel, IPS, Additional Commissioner of Police, Hyderabad city, Dr.Sameer Malhotra, Director &Head, Department of Mental Health &Behavioral Sciences, Max Super Speciality Hospitals, New Delhi, Dr.Smita Sharma, Consulting Psychologist, Educational Consultant & Founder Member, Reach Beyond NGO, Ushashree, Director, Roshni NGO participated in the panel discussion moderated by Nitya Kanuri, MBA/MPH, Yale University, USA, Founder & CEO, Navi Health.

Speaking about the programme, UsharaniManne, Chairperson , FICCI FLO Hyderabad chapter and Founder-Director of PolmonGroup of Companies said, “FICCI FLO, Hyderabad Chapter is glad to launch a yearlong campaign – #REACHOUT –to spread the message of positive mental health and raise awareness about mental health issues. The need of the hour is to create widespread awareness about accepting and treating mental health problems as any other physical illness. While debunking the stigma(s) around mental health, the #ReachOut campaign will encourage those undergoing it to talk about the issue, seek professional help, prioritise self-care, practice self-compassion and focus on positive thinking. FLO is supported by Roshni NGO through its Helpline in this campaign. Through the yearlong campaign, FLO &Roshni NGO are hopeful of initiating a meaningful and effective dialogue on positive mental health. Conversations, activities, workshops revolving around making these life-saving skills available to more and more people will be planned month on month.”

A WHO study conducted for the NCMH (National Care of Medical Health) states that at least 6.5 per cent of the Indian population suffers from some form of serious mental disorder. Unlike the popular belief that depression is a luxury disease, the study showed that there are no discernible rural-urban differences. The average suicide rate in India is 10.9 for every lakh people and the majority of people who commit suicide are below 44 years of age.

Despite these statistics, mental health as a topic still remains associated with stigma. Studies reveal that media stereotypes, misinformation and lack of education continue to accentuate the problem.

The hour long Panel Discussion and subsequent Q&A brought forth several aspects of mental health from clinical psychiatry to psychology to counselling and the kind of support available to the victims and their families. It established the need for those suffering from mental health problems to speak about it freely and reach out for help – whether from family members, friends, colleagues and eventually, from professionals in the field. The panellists also brought forth the ways and manner in in which the society can reach out to those suffering. What reverberated strongly was the absolute, undeniable importance of reaching out – for help and with help.

FLO Hyderabad launched the yearlong campaign –‘#ReachOut – There’s always Somebody’–with a lyrical theme song featuring the Past Chairpersons and Core Committee members of the organisation.The lyrics for the song were penned by PriyaGazdar, Hon. Secretary of FLO Hyderabad, and COO, RBC Worldwide. A video compilation of bytes from several influencers on the topic of mental health was also released on the occasion.