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Uplifting Mental Health of Vulnerable Segments of Population in Pakistan

On May 2nd, 2024, the National Institute of Psychology (NIP), Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, in collaboration with Pegham-e-Pakistan hosted a seminar titled “Uplifting Mental Health of Vulnerable Segments of Population in Pakistan,” under their project sponsored by IOM. Prof. Dr. Rubina Hanif (Director NIP) welcomed honorable chief guest Professor Dr. Shafiq-ur-Rehman (Registrar, QAU) and Prof. Dr. Muhammad Zia Ul Haq (Director General, Islamic Research Institute, International Islamic University, Islamabad) as the distinguished resource person of the talk. He reflected upon mental health outcomes in context of gender-based violence and sufferings of children, elderly, and people living in deprived condition. He shared thoughts with wealth of expertise in Comparative Fiqh, a commendable record of academic leadership, and peace-building initiatives. The seminar drew participation from 281 attendees from fraternity of psychology representing various esteemed institutions in Islamabad and Rawalpindi. The esteemed presence of the seminar was honored to have Professor Dr. Shafiq-ur-Rehman, the esteemed registrar of Quaid-i-Azam University, as the chief guest. His presence underscored the significance of the seminar’s themes and highlighted the university’s commitment to fostering inclusivity and understanding. Professor Dr. Shafiq-ur-Rehman emphasized in this speech about the pivotal role of research in fostering mental health upliftment among the vulnerable segments of Pakistan’s population, also added that through rigorous research, tailored interventions could be developed to address the unique mental health concerns of marginalized communities, ultimately fostering a more resilient society. The key objectives of the seminar were to raise awareness and increase understanding of participants about the unique mental health challenges faced by vulnerable segments of the Pakistani population, including women, children and adolescents, elderly, and marginalized communities living in deprived conditions. Dr. Zia-ul-Haq particularly invited all participants to do focused research to find reasons for violence against women and children and find solutions to address the problem. The seminar was moderated by Ms. Noreeta Suleman (Lecturer cum Research Associate). Participants showed keen interest in the talk and asked many questions and shared their views. Through shared insights and collective efforts, participants reaffirmed their commitment to creating a more inclusive and equitable society where mental health is prioritized for all.