LOMÉ, DOUALA and PARIS, April 4, 2022 -/African Media Agency (AMA)/- Bluemind Foundation is organizing the first edition of the Heal by Hair training from April 4 to 6, 2022, at Azalaï Hotel Abidjan (Ivory Coast). This short training program aims to train 30 hairdressing professionals to become ambassadors of mental health of the signature program Heal by Hair.
Selected from nearly 250 applications from professionals and self-taught by a jury composed of members of the Scientific Council and the Stakeholders Committee of the Bluemind Foundation, the first class of Heal by Hair ambassadors is comprised of owners or managers of hair salons from the Abidjan communes of Yopougon, Abobo and Cocody. With an average age of 35 years and having at least two years of professional experience, the selected hairdressers are all eager to be better equipped to contribute to tahing care of their client’s mental health.
“Women don’t come to the salons just for their hair. But also to de-stress by talking and sharing with their trusted hairdressers. Therefore, the Heal by Hair program is more than welcome. It will allow us to develop new skills to help our customers better”, said Victoire Biégny, a selected participant for the program Heal by Hair. She is also President of the National Committee for the Promotion of Activities of the Professions of Aesthetics of Côte d’Ivoire (CONAPAPECI) and President of the Board of Directors of the National Council of Hairdressing and Aesthetics of Côte d’Ivoire.
For three (3) days, the ambassador hairdressers will be trained in the basics of mental health and psychological first aid. A customized training, both individually and collectively. They will benefit from theoretical and historical immersion, practical group workshops, well-being and psychological support sessions, leadership coaching and meetings with inspiring personalities.
The pedagogical objectives of the Heal by Hair training are to provide hairdresser ambassadors with a more in-depth knowledge of mental health disorders; to give them a method and tools adapted to observe and recognize the first manifestations of mental troubles or the aggravation of existing conditions; to develop interpersonal and active listening skills; and, if necessary, to be able to refer people to mental health experts. Like somatic first aid training, the Heal by Hair program will allow hairstylist ambassadors to become the first link in the care chain, not mental health professionals.
Experts in mental health and leadership deliver the Heal by Hair training. These Ivorian, pan-African, and international psychiatrists and experts are convinced that mental health needs to be looked at differently and that with a short training in psychological first aid first-level responders can help make a lasting impact on the ground. Trainers include:
- Chrissy KUOH, therapist and Bluemind Foundation Scientific Council Coordinator;
- Dr Olga PORQUET, psychiatrist and member of the Scientific Council of Bluemind Foundation;
- Dr Sonia KANEKATOUA, psychiatrist and member of the Scientific Council of Bluemind Foundation;
- Dr Madjara ANOUMATACKY, psychiatrist and psychotherapist. She has been working for nearly 14 years at the National Mental Health Program in Côte d’Ivoire;
- Dr Anna Corine BISSOUMA, psychiatrist and founding member of the Association Autismes Côte d’Ivoire (2Aci);
- Dina LAHLOU, expert in mental health and well-being, with more than 26 years of teaching experience;
- Nabou FALL, managing director of Vizeo, ICF certified coach and Harvard Business School certified female leadership coach.
This edition of Heal by Hair is under the patronage of Mister Ciss St Moïse, a key figure of the Ivorian artistic creation. Excellence Price of the Best Craftsman of the President of the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire, he started his career as a history and geography teacher. He had also taught at the female National Center of Cocody.
“After several years of R&D and field studies, we are happy to be able to put faces, voices, and especially attentive ears on the Heal by Hair program – which should have a strong social impact! Indeed, we estimate that 10,800 women will benefit from active listening and psychological support from these 30 hairdresser ambassadors, pioneers of the Heal by Hair program, during the year. These encouraging results fuel our audacity to continue innovating in mental health and our determination not to stop there”, says Marie-Alix De PUTTER, founder, and president of Bluemind Foundation.
Distributed by African Media Agency for Bluemind Foundation.
The media kit can be found here.
About Heal by Hair, Africa’s First Mental Health Ambassador Hairdresser Movement
Heal by Hair is a short and innovative three (3) day training program covering the basic principles of active listening and mental health.The ultimate goal of the Heal by Hair program is to improve the mental health and well-being of African women through the hairdressers’ chair, one client at a time. In fact, according to Bluemind Foundation’s African Women’s Hairstylist Cross-Study Report, as of November 2021, 67.3% of women surveyed confide in beauty care professionals. Furthermore, 91% of hairdressers are willing to train in mental health first aid; more than 6 out of 10 women would trust a hairdresser more as a mental health ambassador.African women are a pillar of the African economy. And to enable them to expand their businesses and increase their socio-economic value creation, social incentives are provided.
for certified Hairstylist Ambassadors as part of their Heal by Hair program.Abidjan is the first step in a series of free training under the Heal by Hair program. The program will expand to several other countries in the coming months, including Cameroon and Togo.By 2035, Bluemind Foundation intends to train 1,000 hairdressers in 20 African cities and contribute to the improvement of the mental health of 5,000,000 African women.
About Bluemind Foundation
Bluemind Foundation is an international organization chaired by Marie-Alix de Putter, who founded it in July 2021 following her husband’s murder and her personal experience of post-traumatic stress, chronic depression, and anxiety. Our consistent message is based on a strong belief: mental health is health. With the ambition of making mental health a social, cultural, and political issue, Bluemind Foundation’s mission is to destigmatize mental health and make care accessible to all.The Bluemind Foundation is headquartered in Lomé (Togo) – with offices in Douala (Cameroon) and Paris (France).
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