Chhimi Dema

Troubled by academic pressure, parenting difficulties and interpersonal issues, a total of 343 clients have availed the Sherig Counselling service since March.

“Sherig Counselling Service” is a Facebook page created by career education and counselling division of the education ministry to reach out and provide psychosocial support to students in the current situation.

As of yesterday, Sherig Counselling service received 233 student clients consisting of 103 boys and 130 girls.  The counsellors  also catered counselling services to 20 parents, 15 teachers and 75 individuals from various job sectors.

This is an increase of 196 clients availing the service since last month.

Career education and counselling division’s chief counsellor Reena Thapa said that the increase in the clients is because the division has been reaching out to people rather than just waiting for them.

The chosen social media platform-Facebook has helped to reach out to others, Reena Thapa said. Other reasons for contacting the counsellors were self-harm thoughts, stress and distress, family issues and substance use.

Counsellors have been receiving calls from new and old clients. As a follow-up, the counsellors usually call the old clients, she added. Continued follow-ups on clients who availed counselling before Covid-19 are also conducted.

On an average three to four calls are received in a day by a counsellor.

Some clients during the last phase of counselling stage have expressed that the service has been helpful to them, Reena Thapa added.

“This is a good opportunity to provide our service even when the schools are closed and protect the psychosocial health of the children, parents and the community.”