“From jobs, families, relationships, housework… women have to take care of all this and so much more. But who’s taking care of them and their mental health?” asks Aarushi Luthra, co-founder at My Safe Place.
With discussions on women’s mental well-being becoming increasingly significant in recent months in lieu of the pandemic, founders of My Safe Place – an online mental health platform – has decided to run a campaign called ‘Wonder Woman Campaign’. Under this initiative, the three founders – Rashi Kumar, Pooja Kumar and Luthra – plan on dedicating a whole month, starting March 8, to mental health by providing women a platform to share their journeys of self-care and well-being.
“While conducting workshops and organising events, we received feedback about how women constantly face a lot of challenges. The gender pay gap, ill-treatment at workplace and burdens at home are a few such challenges,” Luthra says.
In order to understand the kind of challenges women face and the manner of support they require, My Safe Place conducted a survey during January and February.
Through this survey, Luthra says, they found out that a few of the common challenges were the inability to maintain a proper work-life balance and managing expectations, among others. “Based on this, we tried to curate events and ways in which we can help them and finally put together this one-month long campaign.”
The co-founder further adds, “Our main aim at My Safe Place is ‘Speak Out, Seek Out’ via which we encourage people to express themselves freely instead of suffering in silence. Similarly under this campaign, throughout the month, we intend to provide a safe platform wherein women can celebrate their achievements and share their stories and challenges.”
According to Luthra, sharing there stories in the form of posts on their social media or through Live Sessions would further encourage other women to speak out, seek out the help they need and start prioritising themselves by focusing on their mental and emotional health.
In addition to this, she adds, they would also be organising a series of weekly events from stress buster workshops like mandala art and dance therapy, to interactive discussions and Instagram Lives on the role of women in the world today, managing expectations, finding work-life balance and setting boundaries.
My Safe Place
According to Luthra, My Safe Place was founded eight months ago during the nationwide lockdown with an aim to improve the accessibility to mental health services. “We began by providing one on one online consultation to people, for which we have a number of experienced psychologists and life coaches on our panel.”
“Since then, we have also moved into softer forms of therapy like art therapy, music therapy and mindfulness for both individuals as well as corporates,” she further explains. Lastly, they provide a special senior citizen program called ‘Suhana Safar’, she explains, wherein they meet every week in groups of around 15 people to discuss topics of their interests in the first half of the session which is followed by various forms of therapies like music or art therapy in the second half of the session.
She elucidates that through their female-led startup, they wish to gradually disintegrate the stigma that revolves around mental health in India and encourage more free and positive conversations along with bringing about some level of awareness of the importance of seeking help. “Moreover, we intend to reach out to more and more people irrespective of their age, gender, class, profession or caste.”
All images provided by Aarushi Luthra.