Devika is passionate about her ‘Peer Support Program’ wherein adolescents are provided an informal alternative to the traditional counselling set up. As part of the Program, ‘Peer Supporters’, who are students who have experienced and overcome typical challenges such as examination stress, body image problems or relationship breakdowns etc, are trained in basic counselling skills of active listening and empathetic responding. Their goal is not to provide advice but to enable the students seeking support to engage in cathartic self- expression or determine the best solution for themselves. Devika conceptualized and piloted by her in response to a felt need for a non-judgmental and empathetic space where students could confide in people their own age. This program is currently installed in different institutions.
Devika Gupta is pursuing a Master's degree in Sustainable Development Practice, and her passion for mental health was ignited during her final year hospital internship while at Lady Shri Ram College for Women, when she observed the positive change Psychology can bring in people's lives. Devika has worked with a development consulting firm, including a 5 month assignment in the Patna Secretariat for the Bihar Vikas Mission under the Principal Advisor to the Chief Minister. In the future, Devika aims to work at the intersection of social development and mental health.
This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx