Mental health advocate Dick Moore returned to Bangkok Patana this week to deliver powerful presentations to both parents and students. He also worked with our Pastoral Leaders, delivering the Youth Mental Health First Aid qualification. As his personal motto is “Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass, it is about learning to dance in the rain”, his discussions centred around coping with mental health struggles, what he refers to as “storms”, and learning how to “dance in the rain”.
Dick reminded parents that mental health is essential to students’ learning, as depression and anxiety can reduce cognitive function up to 30%. When considered alongside assessments and exams, such a statistic can help carers to understand the value of guiding adolescents to learn effective coping strategies. He also outlined that many mental health issues originate during adolescence, and as such, healthy coping strategies are best developed before they are necessary, arming students with pre-determined ways to manage their stress and anxieties. One essential method of doing so is to work on empathetic responses and connection with our students, both from parents’ and teachers’ perspectives. Having spent time with a large majority of the Bangkok Patana Community, we are grateful for Dick Moore’s visit this week as it embodies our value of Well-Being and aligns with our commitment to the development of a ‘caring international community’.