Ilocos Norte dads pass reso to expand mental healthcare for learners
The Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Ilocos Norte passed a resolution allowing the Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte (PGIN) and the Department of Education (DepEd)–Laoag City to collaborate in prioritizing the mental well-being of Ilokano learners in the face of the pandemic.
The Draft Provincial Resolution No. 2021-04-301, authored by Board Member Atty. Saul Paulo A. Lazo was approved on its second and final reading on April 12, 2021, authorizing Governor Matthew Marcos Manotoc to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding for the provision of mental health services in the province with DepEd Laoag City, represented by Schools Division Superintendent (SDS) Vilma D. Eda.
According to Atty. Lazo, the COVID-19 pandemic is causing more students to experience emotional and psychological effects. As a result, the Provincial Government and the education sector are working together to ensure that learners’ mental health is taken care of.
The department’s “Project HOPELine 24/7” and PGIN’s “Speak up, I’m Here” (SUIH) Mental Health Center and Hotline will merge to accommodate more students who need mental health interventions.
“In the first week of January 2021, we had a student in Pasuquin who committed suicide. We were alarmed, so we established a system in which we checked on our students one by one through telephone calls. We found out that many needed guidance and counseling services. However, we only have four guidance counselors in DepEd Laoag City. So we need to seek partners in addressing this problem. After our initial meeting with the SUIH, they said that they are willing to help us,” SDS Eda remarked.
549 students have been validated out of the city’s total enrolled students, according to SDS Eda, and their top concern is the need for learning gadgets.
Moreover, SUIH has already answered over 100 calls from Ilocos Norte, including Ilocos Sur, La Union, and Zamboanga provinces.
SUIH also provides face-to-face consultations, mental health caravans in local government units, and a 24-hour hotline service in collaboration with accredited therapy professionals.
SUIH hotline numbers are available with these numbers: 0921-952-9236 (Smart, Talk and Text, and Sun Cellular), and 0966-461-0706 (Globe and Touch Mobile)
These are the HOPELine numbers as well: 0909-623-5316, 0921-468-7842, 0933-877-6161, 0906-568-3084.— Blessing Angel V. Agliam, PGIN-CMO