In an effort to address the scourge that is suicide, the Guyana Foundation through its partnership with the William James College recently held a training workshop in Essequibo. The William James College is a leader in educating the next generation of mental health professionals through its Counselling and Psychology graduate and undergraduate programs. The University is located in Newton Massachusetts, USA.
The workshop endeavoured to increase the ability of community leaders to effectively respond to, intervene, and support suicidal individuals. It covered practical and effective problem solving and stress management methods which were adapted from interpersonal psychotherapy for depression and music therapy. The workshop which was highly interactive included mini-lectures, discussions, group work and expressive arts activities.
A total of 52 participants were in attendance and it included representatives from the Ministry of Health, Social Protection, New Opportunity Corps, Hope For All, Child Care and Protection, major religious organizations in Guyana, recruits from the Richard Fickal Police College, volunteers from Caribbean Voice, members of the newly formed Sunrise Support group in Wakenaam, volunteers of the Guyana Foundation and other community leaders.
Participants expressed their gratitude for being given the opportunity to be a part of the workshop and shared how they would take the knowledge gained to their organizations and communities and even apply it to their personal lives.