Coping Mechanisms and Recovery Post Covid-19

On 20th June, 2020 at 6:00 pm IST, COVID-19 helpline India organised a webinar on “ coming out stronger on coping mechanisms and recovery post covid” where various experts gave multiple viewpoints on how they are coping up with the current times and plan to recover post the pandemic. The webinar kick-started with an Informal introductory conversation amongst the panellists. where co-founder Nikita Gupta illuminated the panellists about the initiative taken by the team of the Helpline. Further on, co-founder Ms Jaanvi Chopra introduced the panellists to the audience and passed on the virtual mic to Ms Sonal Goel, the moderator of the session, to conduct the webinar.

The first speaker of the session was Dr. Shaili Tomar, who holds a decade long experience in the field of holistic health and nutrition and has pursued various professional courses in clinical nutrition, food safety, Ayurveda and psychology to expand her knowledge base in comprehensive wellness and preventive medicine. DR. Shaili started off her session by emphasising on the “ray of hope” the pandemic has brought in, and focused on the positives of the pandemic rather than the negatives. She spoke about solidarity, and how the pandemic has shown no bias and has equally been harmful to everybody, she believes the first step to recovery is to act as a community. Dr. Shaili then spoke about her view on coping mechanisms and said she follows a ‘4A’ technique, which revolves around Accept (the situation), Adopt ( the mechanisms), Avoid (your triggers) and lastly Awareness ( of the information around you). Dr Shaili further emphasises on being proactive rather than inactive.

The second speaker of the session was Mr. Pawan Kumar, who leads Sattva’s CSR advisory practice, working with corporate clients across strategy, capacity building, assessment and programme management projects. He starts of the session by explaining how corporates and NGOs help enable capital funding, and further goes on talking about the philosophies of Sattva and how they believe in over-preparing rather than under-preparing and the conservation of cash. he also acquainted the audience with various ways the CSR advisory avoids layoffs and mentioned two ways which were – one on one counselling sessions for the employees and the providing a covid-19 insurance to them. Lastly, MR. Pawan talks about the 3 way CSR to help NGOs which is- Mitigate ( the survival of organisations), Adapt and Pivot ( towards new ways of engagement). 

The third speaker of the session was advocate Meenu Padha who is the founder of Masti Ki Pathshala, a school for underprivileged kids and and is also the global goodwill ambassador for the “ my body is my body”,  a child abuse prevention programme. She starts of the session by talking about the increase in child abuse during the lockdown and cites a media report  which stated that “child line India” which is a helpline for children in danger received more than 90,000 SOS calls in just 11 days during the initial days of the lockdown. She went on to explain that it is very difficult to figure out where children are being abused in these times because everybody is stuck at home. She also lastly mentions that there has also been a grave increase in domestic violence during this lockdown, and suggested keen awareness on part of everybody.

The last speaker of the session was Dr. Lakshmi Sankaran who is the HOD, department of applied psychology at the Banyan Academy for leadership in mental health in Kovalam. She starts off her session with the presentation of a slideshow created by her, with the heading “they ran the show”. Dr. Sankaran explained the work of the Banyan community beautifully using personal anecdotes and how the community has been able to help people in various aspects, whether it was through the delivery of medical supplies or through art based activities or religious coping. She further explained that the organisations key in coping is through teamwork and how the residents use vocational training to form a support network and extend their help to communities with mentally ill members and believed that the key takeaways are to build networks and focus on teamwork

MS. Sanjana addressed certain questions to the panellists and after that the session was concluded with the moderator MS, Sonal Goel thanking the panellists as well as the audience. In all, it was an extremely engaging and interesting session, one that not only appraised the audience about current contexts, but also gave them practical tips and suggestions on how to go ahead once it all begins to settle down.