Mind Management Foundation, an NGO that is established with the aim of providing lasting solutions and remedies to issues bordering on mental health and suicide has begun a nationwide training tour. The foundation, according to the country Director, Barrister Arinze Emmanuels, was setup as a response to the increased suicide rate in the nation. Her goal is to have a suicide free Nigeria by 2025; and the mission is to ‘Train at least 2 million volunteers across Nigeria, to make the nation suicide free by 2025’.
Although set up this year, the Mind Management Foundation has gained access to highly sensitive offices through painstaking efforts by the members. This access has resulted in five successful workshops in different parts of the nation: three in Port- Harcourt Rivers State, one in Edo state, and one in Lagos state.
Starting out with the paramilitary organisations(because statistics show that at least 70% of retired soldiers have mental health issues later in life due to the nature of their jobs), the Mind Management Foundation has trained the officers of the Federal Road Safety Corp, the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corp, and the Nigerian Army in Rivers state; the organisation also trained officers of the Nigerian Immigration Service in Edo state as well as the officers of the Alagbon Correctional Centre in Ikoyi, Lagos State.
The Rivers State’s series of training held on the 18th and 26th of August, while the ones in Edo and Lagos states held the 1st and 8th of September respectively. Each of the trainings, which was on various topics related to mental health such as: ‘Causes, Symptoms and Effects of Mental Health Challenges; Recognition of Suicidal Signs and Preventive Methods; Emotional Intelligence’, to mention a few, had no less than 45 officers in attendance per class.
The responses received at the end of each of these trainings have been positive, with each group asking for more of such; many who have been faced with any form of mental challenge opened up and started receiving help that was provided. The Foundation is set to repeat the same process among military officers and all paramilitary organisations in all 36 states of the nation. The organisation also intend to extend the training to all levels of the social strata. This is in response to the statistics provided that 50% of suicide in Nigeria happens among youths from 30years below. By doing this, the foundation is quite confident that by 2025 Nigeria will be rid of suicide.