KMWL Market Report

COVID-19 mental health workshops in planning

Written by: The Hilltops Phoenix

IMAGE: Lived experience youth worker Teyana Nelson aims to host the sessions to assist the community.
IMAGE: Lived experience youth worker Teyana Nelson aims to host the sessions to assist the community.

Free mental health sessions to deal with the impacts of COVID-19 lockdown and restrictions is in the works by lived experience youth worker Teyana Nelson.

She has tried hard not to listen to news about the pandemic, for the safety of her own mental health and wellbeing. The experience has inspired her to reach out to the community, offering support.

“I myself know first hand how lockdown has an effect on people’s mental health. So in a sense you could say the announcements and cases have affirmed my mission now more than ever,” Teyana said.

She hopes to involve politicians, the Murrumbidgee Local Health District and organisations such as Young PCYC in the sessions.

“It’s a very uneasy time for many people in our community and having lockdowns and restrictions has made me want to work harder than ever to help anyone who needs someone to reach out for them,” she said.

Teyana has struggled with mental illness after living through traumatic events in her childhood and adolescence.

“It has always been my mission to use my story to make a difference to those suffering with mental ill health after losing my older brother to suicide in 2009 and seeing the effect it had on my family as well as myself. No one should have to suffer alone or silently,” she said.

By sharing her story, and stories of others, who live with trauma and mental ill health issues while living in the Snowy Mountains, she reached so many more people than expected, and was awarded a Monaro Service award from the State Government.

The sessions in the next few months aim to promote conversations about the importance of utilising support and resources available that can ease the mental health impacts in the current environment.

The timing depends on the COVID-19 pandemic situation.

John Niven

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