1200 people from over 25 countries, including mental health experts, educators, parents and young people from around the world signed up for London-based mental health charity iheart’s (Innate Health Education and Resilience Training) FREE two-day virtual conference ‘Finding Emotional Freedom in Lockdown’ on 1st& 2nd April.
Pulled together in just over a week and a virtual ‘first’ for iheart, this hugely successful event was designed to help parents, families and educators to help themselves – and others – navigate the uncertain and unchartered waters of the covid-19 pandemic. A range of international speakers including leading medical experts, best-selling authors, mental health professionals and educational leaders (see attached for key speaker bios) delivered a blend of uplifting presentations, interactive workshops and panel discussions covering subjects including dealing with fear and stress, finding wellbeing in the face of loss and trauma, keeping the kids sane during lockdown and helping them to cope with the stress of leaving school suddenly.
“The need for all of us to educate ourselves about our emotional resilience and mental health has never been greater- the numbers speak for themselves,” says iheart CEO Brian Rubenstein. “The main aim of this event was to show that freedom is a state of mind, so that even in a global lockdown, all of us can experience psychological and emotional freedom and good mental health to share with those around us.”
Essential, given a potential global health pandemic on our doorstep. “It is my prediction that after we get through the next several weeks of social isolation, the biggest trauma will be on Mental Health which is why this conference was so important,” says Keynote Speaker, Dr Arthur Rubenstein, MBBCh, Professor, Department of Medicine at the Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine at U Penn, who also adds that the fallout for mental health “could be even worse than the physical illness (Corona) itself… These are unprecedented times.”
A time which also provides the opportunity to learn about our own innate resilience. “Schools may have closed down, but we are now in the school of life and life is teaching us where our wellbeing actually resides,” adds iheart Founding Trustee and Facilitator Debbie Fisher. “This is a wonderful learning opportunity for all of us.”