Category: Notes from the Underground

Let’s Talk (About Depression)

By Wong Zi Yang (19A01D)
Cover illustration by Alvin Lim Jun Han (19S06B)

I don’t think it comes as a surprise to anyone that we have quite a few students suffering from depression in Singapore. In fact, it’s one of the more common mental illnesses seen in Singaporean youth. What comes as a bit of a surprise to me is how little people actually care about the situation; and by “‘care” I mean take tangible action against it. We may hear the odd rumour here and there: “he’s been missing school a lot lately”, or “someone has been hospitalised”. If an incident does happen, people keep quiet out of confidentiality and respect for those involved. But at the same time, doing so means that there is little to no impetus for uninvolved students, already busy enough as is with the academic rigour of school, to care much about it. The problem is not addressed at its root, and we just don’t talk about it – and so I set out to look deeper into students’ responses to depression in Raffles: Do people care enough about it? What then can we do about it?

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RSS Mental Health Strand 2019

By Wong Zi Yang (19A01D)

Photos courtesy of the Raffles Photographic Society

The Raffles Science Symposium Mental Health Strand is back and into its third year, and its focus? You. The theme for this year’s series of mental health talks is ‘Mind-Body Disconnect’, with the Mental Health Strand placing more emphasis on the correlation between physical and mental health. With a total of three external speakers, the event promised to be more prolific than its two predecessors. The event began with an opening address by Mr Magendiran; at least, it was meant to. Although he was originally positioned to deliver the opening address, the event began immediately with Ms Woo Mei Hui from the Raffles Guidance Centre introducing the first speaker, Mr Michael Chee instead. “That’s what happens when you don’t get enough sleep,” Ms Woo laughed, which proved to be an apt if ironic segue to the first topic of discussion.

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FEEL: Mental Health Awareness Week 2018

By Mabel Yet (19S03Q) and Varun Karthik (19S06A)
Photos courtesy of Kathryn Oei (19A01A) from Raffles Photographic Society

In a perfectly ordered universe, we would hop out of our beds each morning at the keen ringing of our alarms. We’d buzz with energy as we attend all of our lectures and produce top-notch grades almost effortlessly. And we’d never break or buckle even under mounting pressure.

On the surface, it seems like everyone has got their act together, as we are expected to have. Having been blessed with so many privileges–from having a proper education to not having to worry about your next meal–it’s only expected that our lives ought to be impeccable and Oh So Wonderful. Yet, it is these expectations that have shrouded the difficult topic of mental health in shadow.

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Mental Health Awareness Week 2018: A Preview

By Mabel Yet (19S03Q) and Varun Karthik (19S06A)

With campaigns about mental health issues popping up all over the world (Singapore included), as well as an unprecedented number of celebrities sharing about their own struggles, our awareness of mental health issues has significantly increased. This progress might have led many of us to assume that we are already well-aware of the misconceptions and stigmas that shroud mental disorders, resulting in our dismissal of the value of mental health campaigns. And for those who are struggling themselves, especially, they would know that mental health can be something inexplicably raw and personal – something which mental health campaigns cannot fully reflect.

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RSS Mental Health Strand 2018

By Nicki Chan (18S03C), Abigail Ang (18S06B) and Elizabeth Leong (18S06G)
Photos courtesy of Raffles Photographic Society

With a prominent focus on personal sharings and stories, this year’s Raffles Science Symposium (RSS) Mental Health Strand offered not only information about the important issue at hand, but also a message of hope for those struggling with their own mental wellbeing.

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