• Sol Matalam

  • Philippines - Halifax

Art by Emily Honderich

Sol Matalam story

Sol Matalam Sol Matalam moved to Canada in 2013 from the Philippines. She is a mental health advocate and volunteer for the Filipino community through East Coast Filipino Portal and Settle East Coast.

Resilience in a Pandemic

I am Sol Matalam, Filipino by blood. Born Islam, but grew up Catholic.

I worked for the hospitality industry for six years. I currently volunteer for the Filipino community through East Coast Filipino Portal and Settle East Coast.

I am an advocate for mental health. In 2018, I was clinically diagnosed with high-functioning depression and anxiety. This pushed me to share my experiences and be able to help other people through my volunteer work in Halifax Defeat Depression.

COVID-19 has greatly impacted my life. I was laid off from my six-year job at the very start of the quarantine and lockdown in March. The loss of routine affected my mental health. I treat this pandemic as a blessing and a curse.

I now found myself feeling that I am starting from the beginning, like when I started my journey in Canada in 2013. The challenges that COVID-19 has brought are out of the ordinary, but I am aware that we need to survive to live. As a Filipino, I am optimistic and resilient. I might be in a bit of a challenging time in my life, but I will pull through and be successful.

"The challenges that COVID-19 has brought are out of the ordinary, but I am aware that we need to survive to live. As a Filipino, I am optimistic and resilient."

- Sol Matalam