Tengku Puteri Raja Tengku Puteri Iman Afzan Receives Honorary Degree

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We would like to express our heartiest congratulations to  Her Royal Highness Tengku Puteri Raja Tengku Puteri Iman Afzan binti Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shahwas.

On November 17, she was conferred an Honorary Degree, ‘Doctor of the University’, by Heriot-Watt University Malaysia at the Putrajaya Marriott Hotel today.

A PRINCESS FOR THE PEOPLE

HRH Tengku Puteri Raja Tengku Puteri Iman Afzan is the eldest daughter of His Majesty Seri Paduka Baginda The Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah Ibni Almarhum Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah Al-Musta’in Billah.

She is a well-known and well-respected mental health activist and advocate in Malaysia as well as the international stage.

Just a few of her recent accomplishments and advocacy milestones are:

  • Appointed as World Federation for Mental Health Representative to the United Nations in New York in 2021
  • Appointed by WHO as the International Patron of World Mental Health Day for 2020-2021
  • Co-founder of the mental health awareness and advocacy platform Green Ribbon Group (link opens in a new tab)

Heriot-Watt University presented the Honorary Degree to HRH Tengku Puteri Raja Tengku Puteri Iman Afzan in recognition of Her Royal Highness’role as an inspirational, purpose-driven leader committed to championing mental health in Malaysia and globally.

A WIN FOR THE CAUSE OF CHAMPIONING MENTAL HEALTH

“The Honorary Degree from Heriot-Watt University is a win for my noble cause of championing mental health,” Her Royal Highness Tengku Puteri Raja Tengku Puteri Iman Afzan said during the ceremony. “I am pleased to be recognised for the positive impact of my efforts, and this momentous occasion has reminded me once again of why I decided to champion the mental health agenda. I am dedicated to continuing my efforts to have a positive impact on mental health and to create an environment that is filled with compassion, love, and encouragement, especially for those who feel alone in their battles.”

She reiterated that pushing the mental health agenda forward will set in motion actionable steps towards breaking negative cycles and habits, and their transmission between the current generation and future ones.

“I would like to build a world where our youth are supported to become the very best version of themselves, so they are able to contribute to society and become even better parents to their children. This is my hope for my children, Zayn and Aleya, too,” she said.

#YouMatter Promotes Mental Health Awareness and Creates Safe Space

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In conjunction with World Mental Health Month in October, Suria KLCC together with The Body Shop invites the public to be part of the change in temoving the stigma of mental health problems. Also coming onboard this year is the is Mental Illness Awareness & Support Association (MIASA).

The campaign with the tagline #YouMatter will run until 10 November 2022.

A SAFE SPACE FOR PEOPLE TO GATHER AND CONVERSE ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH

A safe space is available Suria KLCC for people to come together and converse about mental health without the fear of receiving judgment and being stigmatized by the rest of society.

This safe space, called Safe Space @ Suria KLCC, will be open for the duration of this campaign.

SAFE SPACE @ SURIA KLCC

  • Located at Level 1, Ampang Mall (you can’t miss it)
  • Will be opened throughout the campaign (until 10 November 2022)
  • 10 am to 10 pm daily
  • Participate in workshops, talks, and panel discussions with mental health professionals
  • Talk to the stationed mental health volunteer for more information

The calm room in Safe Space @ KLCC allows one to de-stim and find peace of mind.
WELCOMING THE CALM AFTER A TURBULENT MCO

“The last two years marked a turbulent and uncertain time for all,” says Andrew Brien, the Executive Director of Suria KLCC Sdn Bhd. “With the pandemic in the rear-view mirror, there’s no better time to reconnect and focus on recovery.”

He adds: “The Safe Space @ Suria KLCC is a welcoming space where the community can come together to share and learn. After all, a problem shared is a problem halved—we want people to leave the space feeling better and with more insight about themselves or others.”

A TIMELY EFFORT TO REACH OUT TO AND EMPOWER YOUTHS

YAM Tengku Puteri Raja Tengku Puteri Iman Afzan Al-Sultan Abdullah, the Founder and President of the Green Ribbon Group, emphasizes that Safe Space and similar efforts are needed to show our support for those with mental health problems as well as to highlight an ongoing commitment towards doing more for the cause.

She adds that for this year, the focus is on the mental health of youth. “The focus on youth mental health this year is especially timely for the Green Ribbon Group. We are very fortunate to be able to pilot programmes in secondary schools and universities that focus on mental health literacy, self-management and peer support. This has always been a dream of mine—to reach out to our youth and empower them to prioritise their mental health.”

Founder and President of MIASA, Anita Abu Bakar shares a similar sentiment. “Looking after each other should be everyone’s responsibility and not just the health sector alone,” she says. “This is why we should strive to prioritise community-based mental health support—so that the burden of care can be shifted from being shouldered solely by our incredible frontliners to being shouldered by all of us. Through efforts like this, it is our sincere hope that the scale of our response to the issues surrounding community mental health can begin to match the scale of the challenge itself.”


For more information on MIASA, you can visit www.miasa.org.my (link opens in a new tab), while more information on the Green Ribbon Group can be found by visiting greenribbongroup.com (link also opens in a new tab).

See the map below if you’re unsure as to where KLCC Suria is.

A Free App for Women, Especially Marginalized Women

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The University of Nottingham Malaysia (UNM) and Hanai Jiwa Ibu Sdn Bhd have developed an app, called Jiwa Ibu, to provide localised and tailored information on mental, women’s, maternal, and children’s health.

This app, developed in collaboration of the two entities with St George’s University of London, Universiti Malaya and Universiti Malaysia Sabah, serves to reduce the great disparity in access to healthcare between those residing in urban and rural communities. This is because rural communities have limited access to quality medical centres and professionals, and residents of those communities have to travel further in search of quality healthcare.

AN APP FOR MARGINALISED WOMEN

“For years, we’ve wanted to shift our focus to the rural and marginalised communities of Malaysia. Since the idea began, our team of eight dedicated women have run focus groups involving doctors, nurses, midwives, community nurses and everyday women, to better learn what the ideal women and maternal healthcare pathway should look like,” explains Hanai Jiwa Ibu Founder and CEO, Shamala Hinrichsen. “We don’t expect to solve the world’s problems, of course, but one tiny step forward is better than no steps at all.”

UNM and Hanai Jiwa Ibu recently inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to allow for the copyrighting and trademarking of the app, ahead of plans to work alongside Selangkah, Selangor’s healthcare app, to embed part of Jiwa Ibu into the system.

“The Jiwa Ibu app is expected to benefit 15 million women across Malaysia. During its initial alpha-test, the app was downloaded by 3,000 women, with 75% returning to the app within the span of one month from downloading,” shares Associate Professor Dr Joanne Lim Bee Yin of the UNM School of Media Languages and Cultures. “Based on the surveys and interviews that we carried out, 95% of respondents also shared that they wanted the app.

MANY FUNCTIONS FOR EMPOWERMENT & HEALTH SELF-MANAGEMENT

Jiwa Ibu will include a directory for doctors and healthcare centres within the vicinity of the user and other important resources, such as those for violence against women cases.

Users can also store and track their own health records and seek medical assistance through the app.

In an effort to be more accessible, the app will be made available in Bahasa Melayu, English, and other native languages.

Click here to download the app (link opens in a new tab) in the Google Playstore. The app is free.