Shame and Aberoo: Understanding mental health stigma in the Middle Eastern community

Shame and Aberoo: Understanding mental health stigma in the Middle Eastern community


Wednesday December 6, 2017


10am - 11am



This webinar focuses on how individuals from Middle Eastern and Farsi-speaking communities may deal with mental health issues and how service providers can help in de-stigmatizing.

As within any society, stigma toward mental illness exists in many Middle Eastern communities. In Middle Eastern communities, however, the concept of aberoo goes beyond stigma; it is a broader and more complex concept that includes the notion of self and a way of thinking that can profoundly affect one’s life. Aberoo can act as a barrier, preventing people from coming forward or accessing the mental health services they need. 

In this webinar, Poran Poregbal, MA, RSW, RCC, group therapist, at the Vancouver General Hospital’s Cross Cultural Clinic, discusses the concept of aberoo, its impact on mental illness and mental health treatment and services, and ways that service providers can try to facilitate mental health among newcomer clients experiencing this as a barrier.

This one-hour webinar include a 30-minute presentation by professionals in the settlement, social services or health care field followed by a 30-minute "Q&A" session where audience members are encouraged to ask questions, pose scenarios or contribute comments. 

CAMH Refugee Mental Health Project

Looking for more information about cross-cultural mental health literacy projects, as well as mental health & substance use resources available in different languages?  

Visit our Kelty Cross-Cultural page here





Poran Poregbal


Poran Poregbal, MA, RSW, RCC, group therapist, Cross Cultural Clinic, Vancouver General Hospital

BC Children's Hospital

This is an agency of Provincial Health Services Authority, providing provincial tertiary mental health services to the citizens of British Columbia. Programs include: Adult Tertiary Psychiatry, Geriatric Psychiatry, Forensic Psychiatric Services, Child & Adolescent Mental Health, Women’s Reproductive Mental Health, as well as the Provincial Specialized Eating Disorders Program for children and youth located at the BC Children’s Hospital.

Provincial Health Services Authority

Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA) is one of six health authorities – the other five health authorities serve geographic regions of BC.

Ministry of Health

British Columbia Ministry of Health

RBC Children's Mental Health Project

RBC Children’s Mental Health Project is RBC's cornerstone “health and wellness” pillar; RBC Children’s Mental Heath Project is a multi-year philanthropic commitment to support community-based and hospital programs that reduce stigma, provide early intervention and increase public awareness about children’s mental health issues.

BC Children's Hospital Foundation

Through a wide range of fundraising events and opportunities, The BC Children's Hospital Foundation is united with its donors by a single, simple passion - to improve the health and the lives of the young people who enter BC Children's Hospital every day.