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Tali Aziza Robinson Helps Diminish the Stigma of “Mental Health” at Limmud 2017

by Rhonda Prepes,Feb 15, 2017

Mental health is an issue that affects about 1 in 4 Canadians making the concern both pressing and personal for all of us.


Tali Aziza Robinson will present Employing Spirituality and Jewish Values for Mental Health at Limmud on Sunday March 5, 2017 at 10:15 a.m. This session will provide an overview of selected mental health concerns such as anxiety, depression and eating disorders and will examine the connection between mental health and Jewish spirituality.


Tali explains how she recognized that there is a connection between mental health and Jewish values and spirituality, “When I was in my early twenties I began learning with some Jewish leaders in Toronto. Through that process, I began to think about the connection between spirituality and anxiety and was intrigued by the benefit of faith for mental health.”


“I believe that as Jewish people we have a unique opportunity to utilize the foundation of our religion and our faith as a support for mental health. Spirituality has been seen to decrease anxiety, depression, and feelings of stress.” 


“I believe strongly in meeting an individual where they are at. For example, if someone is not a spiritual person than I would never push that on them. However, if that spirituality is there, I believe it is a disservice to the client to not make use of it. Every person is different and no two cases warrant the exact same protocol or approach, but when there is room to make use of someone's belief system as a support, I see it is an amazing opportunity.” 


Tali is a Holistic Nutritionist working in the field of eating disorders and has a Master’s degree in Social Work. She recently started a new job working at a Jewish Day School as a School Counsellor.


She explains, “I feel very grateful to be working in an environment that lends to the exploration of how spirituality exists in the world of mental health. I feel so fortunate to be able to spend my days working with children and helping support them in their school environment. The fact that as a social worker, I get to spend my days interacting with people, connecting with others and hearing their stories is such a blessing. 


“I often tell the students I work with that my job is to make sure that everyone at school is happy and has a great day. For the young kids especially, I find that resonates positively.”


“I feel so fortunate to be able to work in the area of children's mental health in a time where the meaning behind the words “mental health” is shifting. I am entering the field at a time where the understanding that mental health is important and real is beginning to be approached differently and it is very exciting to be able to take part in working towards diminishing mental health stigma.” 

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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

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