In light of the rising issue of mental health in the Arab/Muslim our community, and in response to our community’s growing need for a discussion on mental health from a Muslim perspective, we, a group of Muslim university students and a Muslim Mental Health Counsellor, have decided to launch our first conference: The Serenity Mental Health Conference, for those aged 12 and older, for all community members, students and practitioners working with Arab/Muslim clients.
Leading up to the conference, held in the Spring of 2016, we will be holding Mental Health Awareness events that follow the conference’s five main objectives:
The conference’s five main objectives are:
1. To educate and raise awareness about mental health.
2. How to identify signs and symptoms of mental health.
3. How to treat/deal/cope/help those with mental health.
4. To de-stigmatize mental health through education, understanding, and acceptance.
5. To work in collaboration with various Muslim and non-Muslim communities and services.
The conference will begin with a fundraising event and keynote lecture on mental health and Islam. The following two days will follow a schedule of a number of workshops, panel discussions, and lectures on various mental health topics such as depression, anxiety, stress, suicide, drugs and addiction, relationships (familial/friendship/peers/spousal), social and media influences, identity crisis, body image, low self-esteem, healthy lifestyle, violence and abuse, etc.
We hope at the end of the conference, our target audience will have a better understanding of mental health and will be more aware on how to access support from the resources that we will be providing.