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Seventy six (76) class advisers of the Benguet National High School (BeNHS) were trained on the early recognition and management of depression and suicide among students early this month.
The seminar workshop, organized by the guidance and counseling unit of BeNHS in collaboration with the Philippine Mental Health Association (PMHA) CAR-Chapter was done in two batches, one August 3 and another on August 10 at Calajo food house, Betag, La Trinidad to ensure quality training impact.
Training objectives include capacitating the class advisers on detecting early signs, on how to approach and communicate with students showing signs of depression along with devising a suicide prevention protocol in school.
Dr. Genna Hipolito of the BGHMC Psychiatric Department enlightened the trainees on the early recognition and management of depression and suicide. She pointed that teachers are in a key position to pick up on the early warning signs manifested by any student and she reiterated that such are not to be taken lightly much so that as per statistics, suicide is one of the lead causes of death among school age youth. On the other hand, Ms. Mia Cheong, an instructor at SLU equipped the participants with facilitating skills.
Meanwhile, suicide prevention protocol was discussed by Ms. Irene Alcantara, guidance counselor at Benguet State University. Alcantara stressed that schools play a positive role in suicide prevention because they offer consistent, direct contact time with large number of students.
BeNHS school principal, Nestor Dalay-on and assistant principal, Madison Kiong articulated their full support on the creation of a school committee on suicide prevention.
By: Ursula Manodon Dalay-on