Stress can challenge youth: Counsellor

“Mental health and stress, if not talked about and dealt with professionally, can be one of the first and hardest challenges a student may face in a new college environment,” said Professor Neeta G Pereira, Head Of the Department of Psychology at St Joseph's College (Autonomous).

That is why counsellors' offices have been set up in each block in the college. She said the college has a netowrk of experienced and professional counsellors who are available to talk to students about any stressful situation along with peer support groups and special counselling sessions if needed. Regular events such as playdays, conferences and seminars are also organized to raise awareness about mental health issues.

Pereira added that students regularly meet counsellors to discuss and deal with academic troubles, addictions, break­ups and other mental health issues. “A student can come to the counsellors either directly or through their teachers who have also been trained to assess if a student needs help. If a student is hesitant to talk over privacy concerns, they can feel safe knowing that their conversations will be completely confidential, ” she explained.