By NOUMAN KHALIL
A hot cup of tea does relieve stress level, especially when friendly but professional people are around.
Peel Children’s Centre Thursday (March 27) hosted an Open House titled “Chai (tea) Time” and invited South Asian community members to talk about how to support children and families experiencing social and emotional difficulties.
“We all suffer from stress … immigration, financial, housing and other issues, but not many people can access mental health services,” said Bhupinder Heer, Peel Children’s Centre’s member of South Asian diversity sub-committee. “Today at “Chai Time”, we are promoting the services that we offer to support our clients socially and emotionally. “Chai Time” is a discussion about how to help children and their families.”
Beside representatives from community partners like Mississauga Safe City, United Way of Peel and Punjabi Community Health Services, many youth and their parents enjoyed tea along with hot and spicy samosas in two separate sessions while discussing various aspects of dealing with mental health issues.
Since 1985, Peel Children’s Centre has been helping people and families improve their lives when facing mental health challenges.
The charity agency is an officially recognized children’s mental health centre, which offers numerous services to more than 3,800 children, youth and their families every year.
The centre also provides counseling to children with difficulties of getting along with others or controlling his/her feelings at home, in school or in the community.
“I’m here to say thanks to Peel Children’s Centre and join them in creating awareness about their services and mental health issues in children,” said Tajinder, a resident of Brampton and mother of a teenage boy with some mental health issues.
Tajinder said her son had some mental health issues, which could not be taken care of initially but after seeking help at Peel Children’s Centre, he has improved and feeling much better.
“There are many communities in Peel, but we are focusing especially on South Asians because it is so large and growing rapidly in the cities of Mississauga and Brampton,” said Mora Thompson, Communications Specialist at PCC.
“We’re not talking about normal depression such as ‘I have a test tomorrow or my hamster has died’. We talk about serious level of stress like bullying, HDHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, which makes it difficult for children to focus on tasks) and issues of self-harm,” said Thompson.
She said as many youth try to experiment drugs and drinking alcohol, the centre also offers programs for youth who have both mental health as well as addiction challenges.
To get help or more information, call 905-451-4655.
By NOUMAN KHALIL