MENTAL HEALTH AND WELL-BEING
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As with everything Inside the Sun, all community collaborators are part of building out the Mental Health & Well-Being work area. The following individuals meet regularly to focus on these parts of our efforts:

The Mental Health program is part of  Inside the Sun’s core reentry  program directed at professional training for individuals exiting the prison system. As part of our main organizational efforts, practitioners of diverse healing and wellness modalities are developing and implementing a program component focused on the promotion of mental health and well-being, tailored towards the needs of formerly incarcerated individuals. The program will provide a safe space to foster peer support and informed group discussions with the goal of empowering individuals to attend to both individual and community self-care, and nurturing a sense of belonging within society.

 

The curriculum will be structured into sessions with the following outline of contents:

 

  • Building Awareness will consist of presentations on various topics related to wellness and mental health, to explain the science behind mental health concepts in a way that is intuitive and practical for people to use as a guide in daily life applications.

  • Dissecting Knowledge will focus on asking important questions and spending time to unpack the roots of the challenges afflicting most undergoing the reentry process. 

  • Elevating Consciousness will involve group exercises focused on basic guidelines for addressing trauma-based experiences. The outline for these important discussions will be based on strategies known to aid in trauma-focused interventions:

    • Externalizing the feelings (acknowledgment of pain, exploring effective ways to communicate, importance of sharing stories, benefits of journaling as a reflection tool, practicing self-affirmation). Despite the pain, speak, let your pain out

    • Analyzing the roots of the problem with self-directed questions (what makes you happy, what makes you sad, first thought in the morning)

    • Building coping mechanisms (meditation: acknowledge your thoughts, watch them come and go, realize they don’t define you, and so make peace with them and let them go; practicing gratitude, find your anchor: silence, mindfulness of staying in the now, spirituality, music; declare your hopes and pick a productive action to give shape to your vision of hope)

For  more information, please contact Leny at connect@insidethesun.org.

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