Welcome to the Congress
DEAR FRIENDS AND COLLEAGUES!
I am greatly honored to be invited to participate in the highly prestigious Congress on Mental Health: Meeting the Needs of the XXI Century to be held in Moscow in October in commemoration of World Mental Health Day. The conference program and participants promise to provide an educational and exciting exchange among Russian professionals and international experts from diverse fields, constituting a holistic approach to mental health by integrating psychotherapy science, research, and practice with arts and culture, economics, sports, law, media, social and business. The presentations surely will offer unique perspectives and stimulate creative approaches, as well as surely lead to friendships and collaborations that will contribute to professional and personal growth and fulfillment, and partnerships that will contribute to the further valuable development of the field of mental health and psychotherapy.
I am indeed pleased to present this plenary in my role as the Main Representative to the United Nations of the World Council of Psychotherapy as well as the International Association of Applied Psychology, and as the Chair of the Psychology Coalition of NGOs accredited at the UN (PCUN). Our mission is to present psychological contributions to matters considered by governments and UN agencies and other stakeholders, and to communicate about the UN matters to the professional community, participate in UN high level meetings and commissions, and negotiate about policymaking. I am excited to bring important news to share with everyone about the historic and important successful accomplishments in the past two years on the international stage that will greatly advance the practice of psychotherapy and the value of mental health and wellbeing in the global agenda, that can impact all of us and the entire field.
The Title of my plenary address is:“Good News for Mental Health and Wellbeing in the XXI Century: How psychotherapists can benefit from the new Global Agenda and other Historical Steps on the International Stage”.
In this address, I will explain how these developments are important for all of us in the field and how these advances can be harnessed for our work and for the good of people.
I will also describe how we put mental health and wellbeing in the limelight, and how the contributions of mental health professionals impact other goals of major global import, like combatting climate change, creating peaceful societies, empowering women and girls, and mitigating trauma of disasters and crises faced by refugees. I look forward to sharing the successful advocacy we have done at the UN in the global agenda, partnering with many governments in negotiations and events, and in the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk reduction, and in the World Humanitarian Summit, as well as the historic meeting at the World Bank/World Heath Organization meeting in Washington D.C. just recently to bring “mental health out of the shadows.” As a psychotherapist and as a journalist, I can attest that these successful steps are historic.
In my plenary address, I will also present innovative models of interventions in post-disaster conditions and in the face of epidemics, drawing on my experiences providing psychosocial support after earthquakes and other natural disasters in China, Japan, Sri Lanka, and the USA, as well as being in West Africa during the Ebola Outbreak.I will describe psychological challenges to various sectors, short and long-term impacts on vulnerable populations, guidelines for interventions, explain lessons learned, and propose policy recommendations for future crisis. And I will highlight the importance of addressing the shocking prevalence of mental health problems in youth and what both youth and UN Ambassadors have to say about that. I will show many of these in videos.
Looking forward to the conference in October, I extend great appreciation to Professor Victor Makarov, President of the Professional Psychotherapeutic League (PPL) of Russia, and to Sofia Kamalova, Scientific Secretary of the Central Board of PPL of Russia and Executive Editor of the Professional Psychotherapeutic Newspaper, and the entire organizing partners and committee for their hard work in putting this impressive international forum together.
I am touched to return to Russia again, the source of my roots, and where I have been greatly privileged to participate in the 2013 “First Eurasian Congress for Psychotherapy: Psychotherapy Without Borders: Past, Present and Future” in Moscow, co-sponsored by the PPL of Russia, the European Association for Psychotherapy (EAP) and the Asian Federation for Psychotherapy, where I presented about “Psychotherapy and the Media” and about “Psychosocial support in emergences and catastrophes: techniques for psychotherapists.” My fondness for Russia also extends to the PPL in Novosibirsk, where I presented about “Supervision and Training in Psychotherapy from an American Perspective: Principles and Practice,” performed public speeches, and conducted wonderful workshops and wrote articles, including about “Couples and Family in the XXI Century.”
The partnerships and friendships from these times will last a lifetime. I look forward to similar experiences at this wonderful conference.
Clinical Psychologist, Professor at Columbia University Teachers College, United Nations Representative of the World Council of Psychologists (WCP), author and journalist
Dr. Oleg P. Chestnov
Assistant Director–General on Noncommunicable Diseases and Mental Health of the World Health Organization
Prof. Roy Abraham Kallivayalil
Secretary General of the World Psychiatric Association (2014-2020), President Elect of the World Association of Social Psychiatry
Mr. Hans-Horst Konkolewsky
The Secretary General of the International Social Security Association (ISSA)
Vitaliy V. Rubtsov
Rector of the Moscow State University of Psychology and Education (MSUPE), President of the Federation of Russian Educational Psychologists, Ph.D. in Psychology
Zurab I. Kekelidze
Director General of the V. Serbsky Federal Medical Research Centre for Psychiatry and Narcology, psychiatrist, psychotherapist, anesthesiologist, psychologist, Doctor of Medicine, Professor, Honored Doctor
Dr. Bonnie Kirsh
Associate Professor in the Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy (University of Toronto)
Nikita S. Mikhalkov
President of the Russian Cultural Fund, Chairman of the Union of Cinematographers of Russia, People's Artist of RSFSR, Honorary Member of Russian Academy of Arts
Russian rapper, composer, TV and radio presenter, actor, scriptwriter, film director and producer
Dr. Gordana Milavic
MD., F.R.C.Psych., Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, Co-Chair of the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Section of the WPA
Natalia V. Parshikova
State Secretary-Deputy Minister of Sports of the Russian Federation, Doctor of Education, Professor
Alexey S. Akindinov
Regional General Manager of AZIMUT Hotel Olympic Moscow & AZIMUT Hotel Tulskaya Moscow
Vladimir D. Mendelevich
Director of Institute for Research of Problems of Mental Health, WHO-expert, MD, Professor
Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Gaebel
President of the European Psychiatric Association (EPA), M.D., Professor of Psychiatry
Nikolay G. Neznanov
President of the Russian Society of Psychiatrists, Director St.Petersburg V.M. Bekhterev Psychoneurological Research Institute, President World Association for Dynamic Psychiatry (WADP), MD, Professor
Dr. Mohammad Khodayarifard., Ph. D.
Vice-president of the World Council for Psychotherapy, Professor and Dean of the Faculty of Psychology and Education, The University of Tehran
Dr. Edward Chan
President of the Asian Federation of Psychotherapy (AFP), President of the Malaysian Association of Psychotherapy (MAP)
Darlyne G. Nemeth
Co-Secretary General of the World Council for Psychotherapy, Member of the American Psychological Association’s Council of Representatives, Ph.D., M.P., M.P.A.P.
President of Brazilian Association of Psychotherapy – ABRAP, President of Latin-American Federation of Psychotherapy - FLAPSI
Prof. Dr. Ganesh Shankar
President of the World Council for psychotherapy (Asian Chapter), Founder President of the Asian Federation for Psychotherapy (AFP), Hon. Gen. Secretary of Yoga&Psychotherapy Association of India, Ph.D , D.Litt. (Yoga Psychotherapy)
Prof. Alfred Pritz
President of the World Council for Psychotherapy, General secretary of the European Association for Psychotherapy, Ph.D in Psychopathology and Pedagogics, Rector of the Sigmund Freud University, Vienna
Professor psychoanalyst, Rector of the Sigmund Freud University Paris, Executive member of the World Council for Psychotherapy and the European Association for Psychotherapy, Vice President of European Confederation for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy
Yuri P. Zinchenko
President of the Russian Psychological Society, Dean of the Department of Psychology at Moscow State University, Psy.D., Professor
Viktor V. Makarov
President of the Russian professional psychotherapeutic league of Russia, Vice-President of the World Council for Psychotherapy, MD, Professor