On the 1st of March 2017 CandleX gave a special workshop for international students at The Regent’s International School in Bangkok, Thailand. This event was the first, but surely not the last one outside of China.
The workshop was held during a psychology class for upper class students. The twenty or so students, coming from a variety of countries, were all 16-17 years of age, thus already preparing for the tertiary education. The main topic of the lecture was ways of dealing with depression and involved a variety of activities, such as body movement, group exercises, and discussion.
The event was led by Xiaojie Qin – the founder and executive director of CandleX, hosted by local psychology teacher.
The workshop began with a viewing of a documentary that CandleX made back in 2015. The documentary touches upon the topic of depression and is called “The Tiny Little Box: A Documentary on Depression”.
While watching the short documentary, they students are asked to find answers to the questions about mental health that that they were asked to write down at the beginning of the workshop. The students had a chance to reflect on the documentary, ask questions about it and discuss their thoughts and feeling. Later on everyone separated into several groups and had discussions based on their personally chosen topics.
The topics chosen by students were:
how to deal with depression, how to help others who have depression;
culture and depression (as students all come from different nations and backgrounds, they were keen on bringing up their cultural upbringings and religious perspectives towards mental health);
the causes of depression.
The students also had a chance to learn about ways to deal with one’s emotions, how to release stress and agitation, and where to find resources when dealing with difficult time. The students were very attentive and interested in these matters, as quite a few of them would like to continue psychological and mental health work themselves.
The students were also introduced to the activities of CandleX in China, its approach, and support of the international community. This workshop was a great step towards expanding the organization’s work abroad and it is expected that both attendees of the events and the volunteers at CandleX will continue the spread of mental health awareness and support around the world.