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[Tuning In] Sabrina Ooi on destigmatizing mental illness: Your brain is an organ, and it can fall sick

Written by Emily Fang Published on 

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In a part of the world where many are uncomfortable about discussing mental illness, Sabrina starts difficult conversations to build a support system around mental health awareness.

By day, Sabrina Ooi helps brands in the APAC region optimize their digital customer experience as a customer success manager. In the evenings and on weekends, she’s a professional DJ by night. She’s also the co-founder of Calm Collective Asia, an online community for good mental health, where she has helped build a space to share practical and actionable strategies for better mental well-being through free virtual talks and normalising the conversation on mental health. 

Community members can ask Sabrina questions here.

The following interview has been edited for brevity and clarity.

KrASIA (Kr): At what point did you realize there was something missing in Singapore’s—or Asia’s—support structures for mental health?

Sabrina Ooi (SO): We started Calm Collective Asia during the circuit breaker period, or the lockdown in Singapore. This was back in April. The trigger was the fact that mental health services were considered non-essential during that time, so if you had to see a therapist or psychiatrist and get medication, that was considered non-essential.

I was upset, because I’ve gone through my own mental health journey. It got me thinking about the people who really need that help, especially since it’s such a stressful time for all of us right now.

To continue reading this article, click here to read on Oasis, the brainchild of KrASIA.

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