Counselling Corner newsletter – August 2023

It has been a busy month again for Counselling Corner as we hired more counsellors, travelled around Myanmar including North Rakhine to do workshops, create more awareness and provide training to people to start preparing them to take care of other people in the future. 

In Yangon we have been working hard on public service announcements on mental health (soon on MNTV) and we see more individual clients (and couples!) contacting us to help them start taking care of their mental well-being. We have also seen a big increase of people coming for a free consultation on Mondays; some come for advice on how to support family members with a mental health issue and most come for themselves. 

We also organised a talk between our Counsellor Moh and Nutritionist Dr. Ei about the importance of healthy food to stay mentally strong. Did you miss it? Have a look here:

Read the Myanmar version of this newsletter on our website

Topic of the month – Disabilities

During the month of August, we give special attention on the topic; people living with disabilities. During the Tuesday Live Talks, we explained it’s important that people with a disability live together with people without disabilities and how to reduce stigma and discrimination as there are a lot of misconceptions.

First of all, disability is not a disease. It’s not being abnormal, 15% of the world’s population lives with a disability; physical or mental. We need to realize that some disabilities are not visible here, so what we say and do, can be an embarrassment for others.

It’s not good to completely ignore a disability as it can lead to toxic positivity and create unrealistic expectations. On the other hand, only feeling sorry for people doesn’t help either and isolating people with a disability makes people feel worse.

Some tips to help in the society:
-Learn to understand more about disabilities.
-Ask openly from a positive perspective what you want to know or understand.
-Treat people like a human being.
-Avoid behavioural speeches that cause discrimination and offensive feelings.
-Participate in campaigns, seminars, flyers and campaigns to raise awareness about people living with a disability
-Please consider being involved in daily life, health, social, education, entertainment etc.
-Please raise awareness for bullying, lack of equal opportunities, and lack of consideration

By doing so, there will be less misconceptions about disability, reduce barriers to participation in daily life and bring more talents to the world.

In addition to the weekly Facebook Talks on Tuesday, Counselling Corner organises free workshops on Wednesdays and Saturdays that encourages participants to understand more about people living with disabilities. Join one of these workshops; it’s free and can help you.

Self-discovery Journey Workshop

Every time the Counselling Corner team comes up with new workshops and activities we first try it by ourselves. We also did this for this new story telling workshop and we sat down with the whole team including counsellors and supporting team members to share together stories from our childhood. What important personal events happened in our childhood, how did we feel as a child and how did this influence the rest of our life

We immediately understood this is a very powerful workshop to understand ourselves, overcome for example some childhood griefs, bad memories, fears and become a mentally stronger person. The workshop can be quite emotional for people and the support of peers makes the process so powerful and healing. During the workshop a second counsellor is available for one-on one support if needed.

The workshop can also be good for management teams of companies or other groups of people that have to work closely together, as it creates more understanding, empathy and a bond for each other. It also teaches people not to worry about showing emotions and how to deal with this.

The next subsidised workshop at Counselling Corner is on Sunday 27 August from 9am till 12 noon. Fees are 10.000 Kyats per person. Sign up here:

Congratulations to 20 members of the Myanmar Blind Association
on passing the Intermediate Counselling Skills Training

Over the last years, Counselling Corner has trained hundreds of Myanmar people on basic, intermediate and advanced counselling skills focussing on person-centred therapy developed by the famous American psychologist Carl Rogers. Many of the people trained have started to help others in their community including Rohingya people living in camps in Northern Rakhine State, women living in Ayeyarwaddy division and Kayin State and people with psychical disabilities living in Northern Shan state.

We are currently training a group of 20 very dedicated and enthusiast members of the Myanmar Blind Association and want to congratulate them with the achievement of passing the Intermediate Counselling Skills class with flying colours. All material is translated into braille language and all assignments are adapted to the abilities of the participants. The Counselling Corner trainers applaud the dedication of all participants who are working very hard at the moment to pass also the Advanced Counselling Skills class.

We are sure these 20 members will become excellent counsellors in the future for people with similar disabilities as well as for people without any disabilities.

For companies: keeping staff motivated: organise a challenge

It’s difficult to stay motivated during the raining season as it sometimes feels logical to stay indoors.

Counselling Corner can help and organise a physical and mental health challenge for your company. During a period of 6 weeks, we organise motivational talks by Andy the Trainer and Aung Min Thein, founder of Counselling Corner. Each week a new challenge is given to participants to focus during that week on a physical or mental health exercise to be done. Each participant needs to share a “proof” of the exercise on a newly created company Telegram channel (or on Facebook).

The result:
– Individual people feeling mentally and physically strong
– A stronger connection and team building amongst staff
– Regained energy and motivation

Get in contact how to organise a challenge for your company (any size from 10 till 1000 staff members is OK).

Discount for AIA insurance members

Unfortunately, none of the Myanmar health insurance is currently covering mental health in the medical insurance; we do hope this will change soon as studies have shown that about 25% of the Myanmar population suffers from moderately-severe to severe depression. People suffering from depression try to find a way out which can lead to alcohol or drugs dependency, self-harm etc. and it’s important to talk about your feelings at an early stage.

Counselling Corner is very glad to inform you that AIA insurance Myanmar is offering it’s Ruby members a 20% discount on all counselling sessions and workshops with Counselling Corner. See details here: AIA RUBY Membership

Please do share / like and contact us if you have any questions or suggestions on the above or want to know more about our services. We want to make it easier for people to talk about mental well-being and we need help from all organizations in Myanmar to discuss mental well-being openly with your team and work on improving it.

For inquiries, please contact us:
Phone: 09 785 074 173, 09 784 509 916

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