Head On: Let’s talk about mental wellness

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Head On: Let’s talk about  mental wellness promotes a culture of understanding, acceptance, and responsibility for mental health.

According to the World Health Organization, the number of people who suffer from depression has risen 18% in the last decade, going up to 300 million. The Philippines has the highest number of cases in Southeast Asia, with 3.3 million suffering from depressive disorders. Now that the country’s first mental health law coming into realization, individuals and communities must take large strides in understanding this condition, and helping each other take responsibility for it.

This July, we’re speaking with a diverse group of guests who have different specialties in the field of mental health. This range of expertise is applied to the Philippine context through both well-established and up and coming professional services in Metro Manila and beyond. It is our intention to reach as many people to share about psychiatry and psychotherapy, expressive arts therapy, mindfulness, and neurofeedback, to help empower the nation to take responsibility for their mental health.

About the speakers

Dr. Constantine Della is a life fellow and was the 2011 President of the Philippine Psychiatric Association, and an International Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. At present, he is a member of the Specialty Board of Philippine Psychiatry and the Psychotherapy Section of the World Psychiatric Association. Trained in University of the Philippines-Philippine General Hospital, Dr. Della is a leading figure in his field, recipient of numerous awards, and active in the academe, training programs, community-based programs, research, and clinical practice.

Dr. Cheryl Ramirez is a certified neurofeedback practitioner. She completed her degree in Medicine at the University of the East Ramon Magsaysay Memorial Medical Center, and obtained her certification in Neurofeedback and Hemoencephalogram practice from Dr. Joseph Guan, founder and clinical director of the Brain Enhancement Center in Singapore.

Denise Celdran is Mindworks’ Managing Director, and a Homeopathic Therapist. Aside from her work in Neurofeedback and Homeopathy, Ms. Celdran is a certified breathing and meditation trainer with the Art of Living Foundation. As an advocate of vegetarianism and organic farming, she also runs a vegetarian café in Pasig called Edgy Veggy. She graduated from the University of the Philippines Los Baños with a degree in Agriculture.

Patrick Gamo is a professional counsellor and psychotherapist who has worked with children and adults with behavioral, social, and psychological issues. After completing his Masters in Counselling as a scholar at Monash University, Australia, he returned to the Philippines and currently holds clinic at EMMAUS Center for Psycho-Spiritual Formation, and MAGIS Creative Spaces. His practice largely employs approaches in  Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, suicide intervention, and mindfulness practice.  Patrick’s advocacy for mental health has caused him to start Psych of Pat, which activates advocacy through psychoeducation in the form of weekly informative videos.

Joey Atayde is a Registered Dance/Movement Therapist with the American Dance Therapy Association. She graduated from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York where she completed her Master of Science in dance/movement therapy. As a dance/movement therapist, Joey has worked with numerous individuals ranging from children to seniors. Her clinical practice includes children with autism and developmental delays, adults with various mental illnesses such as depression, schizophrenia, dementia, among others. Upon arriving to the Philippines last September, Joey has given talks about integrating dance/movement therapy into Filipino culture in Ateneo de Manila School of Medicine, UP Philippine General Hospital, Brain Wellness Center of the Asian Hospital & Medical Center and at The Learning Child Pre-School. She is currently the Expressive Arts Program Director of MAGIS Creative Spaces.