National Institute of Psychology, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad

Dr. Muhammad Ajmal

Centre of Excellence, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad

2-Days Training Workshop on
Uplifting Mental Health of Women:Trauma, Violence and its Impact on Mental Health and Wellbeing of Women
May 29-30, 2024

A 2-day training workshop on “Trauma, Violence and its Impact on Mental Health and Wellbeing of Women” was organized by the National Institute of Psychology on 29th-30th, April 2024. The resource persons of the workshop were Prof. Dr. Fayyaz Hussain working in Center for Integrative Studies, Social Science, Michigan State University, USA and Ms. Maqsooda Solangi, Coordinator Women Empowerment, Aurat Foundation, Pakistan were the resource persons for this workshop.
It was the third workshop on the theme of women same workshop was carried out in series. The third cohort of the participants were rendering their services in public and private sector organizations of Pakistan namely, Shifa International Hospital, Rawalpindi Institute of Cardiology, Bahria University Islamabad, Women Development Department, Govt. of AJK, Fatima Jinnah Women University (FJWU), Rawalpindi, Global Peace and Harmony-UK, DHQ Hospital Bajaur, Next-Gen Impact, Khar, Govt. Degree College Rehmatabad Rawalpindi, Pakistan Institute of Living and Learning, Rawalpindi Women University, and Milestone Institute of Arts and Science Chakwal attended the workshop. private sector organizations of Pakistan namely, National Psychiatric Hospital and Rehabilitation Centre, Shifa Caring Centre, PIMS, Akbar Niazi Teaching Hospital, Happy Life Psychological Services, Sidra Akhtar Foundation Drug and Psychological Rehabilitation Centre, Franklin Covey Education Islamabad, and Apples the Grooming School in the workshop.
There were three learning modules comprising six technical sessions planned in two days’ focusing on familiarizing the participants with possible trauma and violence and its impact on mental health challenges faced by women in Pakistan. Trainers specifically focused on how violence is a most common threat to women’s mental health. Moreover, during the training participants were encouraged to understand barriers and vulnerability of women and girls. Participants learned to review developmental history of the women’s struggles. Evaluation was done with reference to cultural stigmas and traditional practices regarding the mental health. There was emphasis with respect to participant’s role within their service domains as mental health psychosocial support providers, health care providers, or social workers to learn the strategies to handle the cases and focus on exploring adaptation of best practices making way to sound health of women. In the last session major key takeaways and corresponding action plan were generated in terms of meaningful social activities to uplift and enhance their mental health and improving their quality of life. Participants were engaged in rigorous practical exercises such as role plays, hand on exercises, expressive journaling sessions, volunteer opportunities, team building initiatives, and active listening sessions. Participants were very appreciative of the fact that workshop was based on activity-based learning through they learnt a great deal about plan of action in their respective field of work.
Dr. Iram Naqvi, Assistant Professor and Ms. Sarah Imtiaz Research Associate cum Lecturer at NIP contributed developing insights into indigenous issues of women. The concluding ceremony of the workshop was graced by Ms. Nigar Nazar a female cartoonist. Ms. Nagar’s best-known character, Gogi, is an urban Pakistani woman struggling with her frailties in the context of sexist social norms. The character was created to educate people about social and educational advocacy problems. She is the chief executive officer of Gogi Studios. Ms Nagar appreciated and commended the wonderful services of National Institute of Psychology. This literary community collaborative outreach was the vision of Prof. Dr. Rubina Hanif, Director National Institute of Psychology. This workshop was held in collaboration with the International Organization for Migration (IOM). It aimed to enhance awareness, knowledge, and skills related to uplifting the mental health and empowerment of women.