In a bid to equip the ‘guidance counselor designates’ in various schools with tools and strategies to address youth issues in Pampanga, Governor Dennis ‘Delta’ Pineda, through the provincial government capacitated some 112 participants from the seven municipalities of the province.
Dubbed as “Capacity Building on Guidance Counselor Designates, the two-day training was held on Friday, April 14, at the Bren Z. Guiao Convention Center.
The first batch of participants trained under the program came from Arayat, Magalang, Floridablanca, Lubao, Candaba, San Luis, and Macabebe.
Second District Board Member Mylyn Pineda-Cayabyab assured the participants and the Department of Education (DepEd) of the full support of the provincial government in helping the students cope with mental health issues.
She said the young students’ best interest and well-being will always be at the forefront of the Governor’s program.
“Pagkatapos ng pandemya, ang dami kasi nating naririnig na cases kaya ayaw pa natin itong madagdagan. Naniniwala kami na kailangang bigyan ng pansin ang mga estudyante. Alamin ang kanilang saloobin at mga problema para hindi humantong sa mga ganitong pagkakataon,” Board Member Cayabyab said.
Records from the DepEd Schools Division Office (SDO) of Pampanga show that there has been a significant increase in the number of students afflicted with youth issues after the surge of COVID-19.
According to Paula Meneses, SDO Pampanga child protection specialist, the leading causes of these youth issues include dysfunctional families, love life, and relationship problems.
“Itong post pandemic talaga ay may malaking naging epekto sa mental health ng mga bata. Maganda ngayon, sa tulong po ng ating governor at vice governor, tinutulungan talaga yung mga kabataan. Kung saan mental health problem palang siya ay inaaddress na agad natin,” Meneses added.
Topics discussed during the training include reported cases of youth issues in the province, the algorithm of the college mental health wellness program, and recommended interventions for at-risk youth, among others.
The provincial government is set to hold another training for the remaining batch of guidance counselor designates from the other clusters in the province.