Walvis Bay junior town Council tackles mental health

The Walvis Bay Junior City Council is determined to tackle mental health related issues among students at the town.

The council hosted a mental health seminar for the town’s high school pupils on Wednesday, aimed at equipping them with techniques to deal with their mental health and how to seek assistance.

The council was inspired by the initiative of the Swakopmund Junior Town Council that held a similar event in 2022.

Walvis Bay junior mayor Taimi Nghuutoola said there is a need to support students at the town, as teenagers face many challenges.

“We saw that it was really needed. The youth needed advice on mental health related topics, including school pressure and stress. The Erongo region, especially Walvis Bay, has a high crime rate attributed to drug and alcohol abuse among the youth. We had experts who talked about these evils, as well as self-harm and suicide, especially among males.

Pupils said it helped a lot and that they really need it, said Nghuutoola.

One of the attendees, Richard Nghilalulwa said he needed the information as he was in a bad space.

“I was not in a good mental space. I was caught up in academic and peer pressure. We learned that there is help out there. We should not keep things to ourselves, as it leads to suicide and other things. It was important to know that the mind is a powerful tool that leads you to good or bad places. We need to check in with ourselves on a daily basis and also be positive, regardless of circumstances in order to overcome tough times. I know what to do now, as we were also equipped with time management tips,” he said.

The council is determined to introduce the idea to the next council and ensure that it becomes an annual event.

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