Not Alone Oman, is the first of it’s kind Mental Health Awareness Initiative in the Sultanate. This awareness initiative was created by Janab Sayyida Basma Al Said in 2014 to spread this message and with the help of a hard working group was even able to conceptualize and create the NOT ALONE AWARENESS VIDEO. The aim of “Not Alone” campaign is to raise more awareness about mental health disorders and how to deal with patients suffering from such disorders. The initiative took the form of a video clip in both Arabic and English and introduced many disorders that could affect our mental state during our life time. The video also featured contributions from prominent public figures and personalities that added more value and strength to the message being relayed which is “You are not alone in your suffering, we are with you’.
Not Alone has gone on to host many events to raise awareness and to promote this cause. Some of the events hosted and conducted by Not Alone and Whispers of Serenity Clinic are:
- 1.Launch of the Not Alone Video:
The video was first launched on the 1st of November 2014 in VOX cinemas and was showcased for the public at City Centre as well.
- 2.Not Alone Stories 1st, 2nd and 3rd Editions:
Real people with real stories of struggles with Mental health issues and how they managed to deal and come out of it. Not Alone stories is a continuation of the Mental Health Awareness Initiative Not Alone. These stories seek to increase awareness of mental illness and social problems through the process of story-telling. On the 19th of February 2015, Whispers of Serenity Clinic launched the first Not Alone Stories at UBHAR Restaurant, Muscat, Oman. Three speakers were invited to speak about the subject of loss. The event also included various activities in which the guests were asked to write or draw on a canvas how each speaker inspired them. The second evet was also at UBHAR in 2015. The third was held at Bait Al Zubair, Muscat on May 2016 where 6 speakers talked about their struggle with several mental issues and their take away from the journey. As is the case in each event, ice breakers and few activities to keep the audience engaged took place.
- Not Alone Art Competition and exhibition:
Artists of different genres came together to depict through paintings, drawings, sculptures, video and fashion their own struggles through mental health and how they could portray the different shades of mental health issues.
- Not Alone Convoy:
The Not Alone Convoy started in 2015 to spread the message of “you are not alone” across the Sultanate. Visiting one city in Oman once a month, the aim of this convoy was to reach the people who can’t otherwise come to us for therapy and counseling. By doing that, we will be raising more awareness about the importance of mental health and how can we help ourselves or someone we know to overcome their suffering with mental health disorders. The convoy included a team of 25 people including Whispers of Serenity team of psychologists, media and number of volunteers. In addition, there were two or three prominent public figures from the society who are passionate about spreading mental health awareness.
- Freud’s Talent Competition:
In 2017 Whispers of Serenity Clinic organized a Not Alone Art Competition under the name of “Freud’s Talent” on Saturday 7th October 2017. The art pieces that the judges reviewed ranged from still art to fashion design to theatrical makeup and they were very interesting and inspiring. The winning ceremony where 3 lucky winners were announced was held on Tuesday 10th October 2017 coinciding with Mental Health Day which falls on October 10th every year.
The focus in Freud’s Talent was on women since 17th October marks the Omani Woman Day here in Oman.
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