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Journal entries while in Philippines refugee camp

Journal entries while in Philippines refugee camp

Mental health matters

As Told By: Heather Nguyen


  • My Name is Heather Nguyen
  • Text 2

  • This story is about my parent(s)
  • Text 2

    Text 1

  • Childhood Address: Nha Trang, Khánh Hòa, Vietnam
  • Departure Location: Nha Trang, Khánh Hòa, Vietnam
  • Departure Year: 1989
  • Camp 1: Palawan (Philippines)
  • Text 2

    Text 1

  • Resettlement Location: Halifax, NS, Canada
  • Resettlement Year: 1991
  • My Story

    00:00 / 01:04

    These are some journal entries my mom wrote during her time in a refugee camp in Palawan, Philippines 1989. I found these journal entries years after my mom passed away in 2008. She never shared her struggles and I never got the chance to ask. She was someone who bottled everything up and attended to the needs of others first. She was loving and caring. She also most likely suffered from depression. But sadly, as a culture mental health is not well understood or acknowledged. So she also suffered alone and in silence. I share this because our parents experienced a lot of pain and hardship, and hold onto a lot of undealt trauma and grief. They struggle to process it all in a healthy manner so it gets passed onto us - intergenerational trauma. I hope Vietnamese people break down the stigma, put aside their pride and find the courage to seek professional help and support.

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