Hi everyone. Thanks for joining me for this new episode of Nepal Now, the podcast where we highlight different ideas and actions to move the country forward. I’m Marty Logan.
Thanks to those of you who filled out the poll on our last episode, about Jumli Marsi rice. It’s available if you listen on Spotify, and I post a new poll and a question there with each episode. This poll was tricky: Do you think the growing trend of selling nutritious crops instead of consuming them is good for farm families? That contradiction was reflected in the poll’s results, with most people choosing they ‘Didn’t know’ if it was a positive or negative development.
If you’re listening on Spotify look for the poll, and a separate question, that you can answer about this episode. No matter where you hear Nepal Now, you can always send me a comment, or question, to firstname.lastname@example.org.
OK, on with today’s chat... I’ve noticed a huge difference in publicity around the topic of mental health since I returned to Nepal in 2016, compared to when I lived here from 2005 to 2010. The subject is highlighted in the news media more regularly, and certainly on social media. Also, there seem to be many more organizations offering mental health education or treatment, both to individuals and to organizations. For example, a couple years ago I interviewed someone from an NGO that is creating quiet spaces it calls ‘counselling rooms’ in schools in some pilot districts. You can find the link to that episode in the notes to this show.
Growing recognition of the importance of mental health might be one of the few positive results of recent disasters, like the 2014 earthquake and the Covid-19 pandemic, notes today’s guest, consultant psychologist Sneha Agarwal Chaudhary. Still, it is alarming that the suicide rate in the country continues to rise steadily.
Sneha and I also chat about a few popular perceptions / conceptions of mental health counselling, like the cost and confidentiality, then turn to discuss particular groups of people who make up the audience of this podcast. These include young people in general as well as those who leave Nepal temporarily to either work or study. I think the main takeaway from our conversation is: If you’re concerned about your mental health, find someone you can talk to.
As today’s conversation includes talk of suicide – please take special care while listening.
Nepal National Suicide Prevention Helpline — Telephone 1166
Previous episode on mental health – Training teens on mental health
Nepal Now social links
Thanks as always to Nikunja Nepal for advice and inspiration.
Music: amaretto needs ice ... by urmymuse (c) copyright 2018 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial (3.0) license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/urmymuse/57996 Ft: Apoxode
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