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June 26, 2014

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Psychologist scheme to cover all of Pudong

PSYCHOLOGISTS will be on hand to give free advice in all 36 townships and neighborhoods in the Pudong New Area by the end of the year.

The service, run by non-government organization the Women’s Federation of Pudong, is aimed at residents who could not otherwise afford to seek advice and counselling.

Founded in 2011, it currently covers 23 townships and neighborhoods.

Last year, almost 4,300 residents sought advice in areas including marriage disputes, education and family relationships, said a federation spokeswoman.

“Every family has its own psychological pressures — no matter big or small,” said Zhou Cairen, an official with the women’s federation.

“It’s better to speak about these and have someone listen to you than to bury it in your heart.”

In a recent case, a father turned to a psychological center in Jinqiao Town as he was concerned about the relationship between his wife and their 14-year-old son.

The father told psychologist Liu Yanhua that the boy insisted in sleeping with his mother, that they were always touching and would kiss on the lips.

“Through counseling, we established that the parents were in a really bad relationship and the father tended to be violent,” said Liu.

Liu said the parents slept in separate rooms, with the boy allowed to choose which room to sleep in.

Since his father was violent, the boy chose to sleep in his mother’s room.

Liu asked the couple to either solve their problems or buy a third bed for their son. Liu also advised the mother to cease any inappropriate intimacy.

She said the father contacted the center because he wanted to talk to someone about his anxiety and problems, but couldn’t afford fees.

Currently, some 300 licensed psychologists support the Pudong service, assisted by 1,180 volunteers.

Each has its own specialty in psychological counseling according to needs of the area.

In Shanghai’s financial district Lujiazui the focus is on helping white-collar workers reduce work pressures.

Shanghai residents can go to a center in Pudong or call the hotline 51061207, between 10am to 8pm every day.


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