Want to help typhoon survivors cope? Attend free workshops on psychosocial support

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/2 January) – Want to help survivors of super typhoon Pablo cope with the psychological impact of the December 4 disaster?

Attend the free workshops on Therapeutic Art Methodologies on January 3 and Interactive Storytelling Strategies on January 4 at Rm. J301, Ateneo de Davao University, from 4:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.

The workshops are an initiative of the university’s Center of Psychological Extension and Research Services (COPERS) and the University Community Engagement and Advocacy Council.

COPERS has been providing psychosocial support to typhoon survivors in the affected towns in Davao Oriental, Compostela Valley and Agusan del Sur since the first weekend after Pablo pummeled these areas. Last year, it also dispatched teams to Iligan and Cagayan de Oro cities in the aftermath of Sendong.

“As our collective community confronts the psychosocial impact of Typhoon Pablo, the Center of Psychological Extension and Research Services (COPERS) wishes to share its resources in getting committed volunteers capable of delivering appropriate support to survivors,” the letter invitation from Gail Ilagan, COPERS Director, said.

The workshops will be conducted by the Mondares couple, Jet and Jonna, Baguio-based psychologists who also helped survivors of the 2009 Typhoon Ondoy.

COPERS sent Jet Mondares, who also serves as guidance counselor of the Philippine Military Academy, to Iligan City parish and Balay Mindanaw in Cagayan de Oro days after Typhoon Sendong in December 2011 to conduct similar trainings.

Ilagan said other workshops will be scheduled “to enhance skills in providing psychosocial support to adult populations.”

Interested parties may call 221-2411 loc. 8351 for details and registration.

COPERS has also linked up with the University Sports Office headed by former Philippine Sports Commissioner William “Butch” Ramirez, for “holistic psychosocial services for children aged 5 to 13” at the Monkayo Central Elementary School on January 5 and San Antonio de Padua parish in New Bataan on January 6. The two areas are part of Compostela Valley province.

The schedule for Davao Oriental will be on January 12 in Lambajon, Baganga and on January 13 in Boston.

“We’re using sports psychology for emotion regulation and restoration of cooperative play behavior among kids. This is our second tie-up following the successful summer sports program 2012,” Ilagan said. (MindaNews)