ILOILO CITY, Aug. 5 (PIA) - The Sangguniang Kabataan Federation - Iloilo Chapter is prioritizing the mental health of the youth in their activities amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
Ma. Angelica Bianca Requinto, president of the SK Federation - Iloilo province, said they conducted a rapid assessment, in partnership with the Positive Youth Development Network, on the effects of COVID-19 among adolescents' mental health.
Since most students will be on blended learning when schools open, there will be no social interaction with other people, she said during her guesting on the Laging Handa Network Briefing hosted by Presidential Communication Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar and organized by the Philippine Information Agency.
"We do not want to neglect their mental health," she added, referring to those who will be in social isolation and those who are vulnerable in abusive homes.
The SK Federation of Iloilo is partnering with a youth organization to craft programs intended to help the youth's mental health.
Requinto said the federation is planning on adopting the Positive Youth Development Network's "Kaibigan Hotline."
She clarified that it is different from mental health support hotlines as it would be a "go-to-platform" for people aged 15 to 30 years old who want to have a friendly conversation if the people they want to talk to are unavailable.
It may also refer the caller to specific individuals or groups to address their concerns.
Requinto also disclosed that the province's SK officials will have and conduct psycho-social first aid orientation and training for the SK.
She said that while the pandemic changed the federation's plans, they still want to continue their work and fulfill their responsibilities to the youth.
"Ever since the start of this pandemic, of course, our regular plan for this year was disrupted by distresses, but it's not an excuse," she said. (JBG/CBA/PIA6)