Foreign Minister attends Transforming Education Summit on mental health promotion in New York
On Tuesday (September 20), Don Pramudwinai, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs participated in the Transforming Education Summit (TES) side event on “Mental health promotion and prevention in schools and learning environments: an urgent call to action for world leaders and donors”.
The event was co-hosted by UNICEF, WHO, UNESCO, Queen of Spain and Thailand, at UNICEF House, New York.
The event provided a platform for sharing information and evidence around the impact of school closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic on children and adolescents’ mental health and the cost-benefit of school-based mental health interventions; and for securing public commitments from governments and donors to take action and invest in promoting and protecting learners’ and educators’ mental health and psychosocial well-being in the education sector.
Don shared thoughts on how best to prioritize mental health and well-being of children and young people in schools. He highlighted three key messages:
(1) Schools could help to promote good emotional health and mental well-being and help detect early behavioural changes and signs of mental distress, while highlighting Thailand’s School Health HERO initiative.
(2) Schools can help deter mental health problems, through increasing students’ resilience to daily demands and challenges, promoting self-confidence through goal-setting and mental health stability training, as well as cultivating positive thinking and developing the right mindset for changes.
(3) Schools must provide a creative and conducive learning environment for all, especially to motivate students to make up for their learning and socialization deficit during COVID-19.
Don also reaffirmed Thailand’s commitment to transform education to be a “booster dose of inspiration” for all children in the context of COVID-19 and beyond, as well as continue to invest in education to ensure that children grow and thrive with joy and positivity.