With the ongoing pandemic situation in the country, one of the most under-highlighted issue that India is facing is that of mental wellbeing. There are very lucky few who haven’t experienced the effects of the virus within their circles. But the grim pictures circulated on the media paint the reality on-ground and are enough to affect the mental wellbeing of any healthy person. At times like this, it is important to seek out help and talk to a professional who can provide ways to manage your stress and give you a safe space to voice your concerns.
Below is a list of organizations available pan-India that are offering telephonic as well as online counselling, free of cost to you or someone who would want to seek mental wellness in this difficult time.
1.PeakMind – PeakMind, an organization aimed at reducing the stigma against mental health and emotional well-being, has announced a free emotional support helpline to fight the COVID-19 fear, stress and anxiety. The helpline offers inclusive access to professional emotional coaches to help people deal with the emotional and mental toll that COVID-19 has taken on their minds. Anyone from across the country can get their problems addressed through a Call or WhatsApp on +91–8047092334, free of charge. PeakMind has come up with this accessible helpline to instill a sense of togetherness and help in every possible way for callers to ensure their mental well-being.
2.NIMHANS– An institution for mental health and neuroscience education, NIMHANS, Bengaluru, is offering free psychosocial support and mental health services to people experiencing stress, anxiety, fear or any kind of emotional discomfort during the pandemic. A team of professional psychologists and psychiatrists is available to help Indian residents 24 hours a day, through a toll-free number- 080-46110007
3.Fortis Stress Helpline- Launched in 2016 for students and parents dealing with exam stress, the Fortis Stress Helpline offers mental health support in over 15 languages. The 24-hour service is taking emergency calls and offering instant responses every day- Call: +91-8376804102
4.Parivarthan Counselling Helpline – Operated by 15 trained, certified and multilingual counsellors, the Parivarthan Counselling Helpline is open from Monday to Friday, 1 PM to 10 PM. It caters to all age groups and provides immediate support and crisis intervention during an emergency- Call: +91-7676602602
5.Vandrevala Foundation for Mental Health – The organization offers multilingual phone counselling round the clock. The sessions are free of cost and conducted by experienced clinical psychologists and psychiatrists. Their helpline also has arrangements with public services such as the police, ambulance and hospitals for emergency situations- Call: +91-999966655
6.Arpan-The Mumbai-based organization, which works to address the issue of child sexual abuse in India, has launched a free helpline service for people in need of mental health support during these uncertain times. Their trained professionals also offer chat-based counselling via direct messaging on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. The facility is available from Monday to Friday, 9 AM to 5 PM, Saturday 9 AM to 1 PM-Call: +91-9819086444
7.SAHAI Helpline- Initially started as a suicide prevention hotline, Bengaluru-based SAHAI now offered help to children, young adults and adults going through emotional upheaval. It has a committed team of volunteers including teachers, professionals and students who receive training from doctors and experts at NIMHANS and the Medico Pastoral Association along with Rotary Bangalore East. The phone counselling can be availed from Monday to Thursday, 10AM to 8PM. Call: 080-25497777, +91 – 9886444075