Over the last few years, the general perception around mental health has improved. However, not all individuals with mental health concerns seek help as the stigma against mental illness is still very powerful. With the current worldwide pandemic, our mental health has become the most vulnerable and hence it is time people talk openly about mental health, so that people facing these issues can access the services provided without feeling ashamed or fear of ridicule.
With a dual objective to address the mental health of the personnel present nationally while making these services accessible and sustainable, Mpower, a pioneer in Indian mental healthcare backed by Aditya Birla Education Trust, collaborated with the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) to launch a holistic mental well-being program – ‘Project Mann’. In the pilot phase, ‘Project Mann’ will be implemented at Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA) and around 4000 CISF employees and their families will benefit from Mpower services.
As a part of ‘Project Mann’, Mpower will be conducting sensitization workshops, thereby increasing awareness levels and help-seeking behaviour among CISF Personnel. The project will also entail capacity-building for mentors, 1on1 Counselling Support and an exclusive 24×7 toll free confidential helpline support assuring mental health assistance to support CISF staff and their families.
On this occasion, Mrs. Neerja Birla, Founder and Chairperson, Mpower said, “The world is currently grappling with two challenges – containing the COVID-19 pandemic and addressing the economic and mental health fallouts of this unprecedented phenomenon. While Mpower has been active in the mental health space for half a decade, I believe there is an urgent need to address the mental health concerns of the frontline and essential personnel. Due to presence in strategic locations and high-stakes involved in such working fields, essential staff experiences higher susceptibility to mental illness as compared with other professionals. To alleviate this, awareness activities, quality clinical support and training by experts will be provided by the mental health arm of our organization through ‘Project Mann’.”
During the launch, Shri M. A. Ganapathy, IPS, DG, CISF said, “Because of the inherent nature of the work and other external factors, the CISF teams experience different forms of stress, including physical and psychosocial, and the same is felt by their families too. And, it is quite human to feel this way. To combat these stressors, appropriate education concerning mental health and effective treatment are needed for our staff and their closed ones. With ‘Project Mann’, we aim to bridge this gap and create awareness around the importance of seeking timely help. We are really grateful to Mrs. Neerja Birla and Mpower for offering these key services to CISF personnel.”
During the launch which was held in Mumbai on 08.11.2021, Shri M. A. Ganapathy, IPS, DG, CISF, Shri Pramod Shripad Phalinkar, IPS, ADG, Airport Sector, Mrs. Neerja Birla, Founder and Chairperson, Mpower, Shri Nawal Bajaj, IPS, IG, Airport Sector and Shri Shrikant Kishore, DIG & Chief Airport Security Officer, CSMIA were present. Ms. Parveen Shaikh, AVP Mpower – Outreach, Collaborations & Strategy gave vote of thanks to all the dignitaries present. To kick-off the project, the launch was followed by a mental wellness workshop organised for CISF employees.