First lady urges officers’ wives to prioritise mental health

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By Sumaila Ogbaje

The First Lady, Sen. Oluremi Tinubu, has advised wives of officers and airmen of the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) to prioritise their mental health while discharging their domestic responsibilities.

Tinubu gave the advice on Saturday at the Mental Health Awareness Walk and TalK in commemoration of NAF@60 celebration 2024, organised by the Nigerian Air Force Officers Wives Association (NAFOWA) in Abuja.

She was represented by the wife of the Minister of State for Defence, Hajiya Aisha Matawalle.

The first lady said that as wives of officers, there were unique demands placed on their shoulders between supporting their families, managing households and navigating the uncertainties of their husband’s careers.

“It is easy to let our well-beings fall by the wayside. So, we have to be very deliberate about our health and mental well beings.

“Therefore, the theme: “Step by step Embracing Mental Wellness Through Movement”, is timely.

“Regular exercise does not just tone our muscles and boost energy levels. It is a tool for mental well being.

“By prioritising our well being, we become not just healthier individuals but better wives, mothers and role models.

“We can handle challenges of life with greater resilience and radiate poor positive energy that uplifts those around us.

“Taking care of ourselves is not selfish, it is essential to our general well-being,” she said.

Tinubu congratulated NAF on attaining 60 years of service and dedication to protecting the nation’s skies and ensuring national security.

She also described the wives of NAF personnel and NAFOWA as the true heroes behind the scenes, serving as pillars of strength for their families and championing the well being of their spouses and wider community.

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The President of NAFOWA and Wife of Air Chief, Mrs Rakiya Abubakar, said the event was organised  to raise awareness on mental health as well as embrace and promote conversation around the issue.

Abubakar said the theme was coined to buttress the pertinence of mental health and advocate for mental wellness through fitness.

She said the event was to also commemorate the 60″ Anniversary of NAF.

She added that the association deemed it necessary to remind them that mental health and wellness remained a critical part of living a healthy and fulfilling life.

She said that it impacts on their relationship, work and daily activities, ad ding that “it remains one of the most under-discussed and undervalued aspects of our lives.

“Our walk and the talk we are about to have is an amazing opportunity to change the narratives and start important conversations about mental health.

“We hope this event provides the avenue to de-stigmatise mental health concerns and to rally together in support of those who may be struggling with their mental health,” she said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the highlights of the event include free medical test, health walk and talks by medical professionals. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)

Edited by Chioma Ugboma/Deji Abdulwahab

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