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I have worked with many youths and adults as a community mental health counsellor and a social science educator in the last decade. Many of these individuals were struggling silently both mentally, relationally and emotionally, and were unsure of when and how to approach help-seeking. They felt uncertain as they did not know how to detect distress, how to deal with the stigma of mental health, where they could find help and how to afford it. Whatever their reasons might be, it seems to me that mental and socio-emotional health education - particularly a form that draws upon my interdisciplinary training in the areas of counselling, psychology and sociology – has the ability to change the social climate surrounding mental health and wellness issues. My academic experience in teaching about mental health and social behaviour has shown me that mental health education is both necessary and appreciated by the community. It is with this in mind that I started Mentidote, a social enterprise aiming to bring my “classroom” for mental and socio-emotional wellness education to the wider society where many individuals and relationships are hurting, in the hope that what we do will help to heal hearts and mend souls.

Best wishes,

Athel J. Hu

Founding Director, Mentidote

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