Chicago, May 26, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) – COVID-19 has spawned a mental health pandemic that severely affects front-line health workers. The annual mental health conference on June 13 at the Naomi Ruth Cohen Institute for Mental Health Education (NRCI), which is held annually, focuses on supporting those health professionals. Key topics for COVID-19: stress and pain during a global pandemic include wellness strategies to address the unprecedented rise in pain, uncertainty, and anxiety.
The conference is an opportunity for mental health professionals, allied health workers, and community members to learn effective ways to cope with grief and control stress. In addition, the panel will focus on effective ways to help diverse communities cope with stress and find a healthy path to post-COVID life.
This year’s conference will take place virtually in accordance with prescribed safety guidelines.
The moderator of the conference is Michael M. Kocet, Ph.D., LMHC, NCC, ACS, who is a professor and chair of the Department of Counseling Education at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology in Chicago, Illinois.
This year’s conference is dedicated to Kate Mahoney, NRCI’s Executive Director (2017-2021) for her tireless efforts and commitment to the field of mental health. Ms. Mahoney joined The Chicago School as executive director of the Naomi Ruth Cohen Institute of Mental Health Education at The Chicago School (NRCI) in 2017. She died last February.
“Kate was passionately dedicated to reducing the stigma surrounding mental illness and providing support to people and families affected by mental illness and suicide,” said Chicago campus doctor Margie Martyn, Ph.D.
“I will always remember Kate as the most positive person, who truly believed in the education, innovation and service mission of our Chicago School,” added Dr. Martyn.
Featured virtual conference presenters include:
- Serena Wadhwa, Psy.D., LCPC, CADC, RYT, CCTP is a psychotherapist and professor at Governors State University. Through her many roles as a consultant, trainer, yoga practitioner, etc. Dr. Wadhwa has developed a holistic approach to therapy.
- Jillian Blueford, Ph.D., LPC, NCC, CT is a faculty member at the University of Denver and is the chair of the grievance skills working group for the American Counseling Association. His clinical career includes working in a variety of settings, including a hospice mourning center, a psychiatric behavior hospital, and as an independent advisor to the Tennessee Department of Child Services.
- David Fireman, MSW, LCSW is the executive director of the Center for Grief Recovery and Therapeutic Services in Rogers Park, Illinois. He also practices psychotherapy based on his own and deep psychologies.
- Michael Catania, a member of the community, was hospitalized because of COVID, where he established a special relationship with one of the emergency physicians who helped save his life. He later collaborated with that doctor to spread COVID through social media with the goal of helping others.
As for NRCI
The Naomi Ruth Cohen Institute is dedicated to eliminating the stigma associated with mental illness and providing support to individuals and families affected by community-created mental health challenges. Located at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology, NRCI offers mental health education, training and presentations to the Chicagoland community, and support organizations dedicated to research, education, self-help, anti-discrimination, and mental illness advocacy.