PBA’s Chris Ross, Tony dela Cruz raise mental health awareness
MANILA, Philippines—With the PBA opening its doors to its players to talk about mental health, San Miguel star guard Chris Ross said it’s the start of an advocacy that would eventually reach more people in the coming future.
Ross, who’s openly discussed mental health before, said he’s fortunate to have a platform in the PBA to elaborate an issue often shunned away due to a stigma that surrounds people who suffer from mental health issues.
“I’m just one guy who has a voice and trying to use his platform in a good way,” said Ross during the Players’ Orientation Friday at Meralco Theater. “Hopefully, I could reach one person that’s going through something.”
“All it takes is one person to reach, hopefully I could reach one and they could reach another person and we just keep going on from there.”
Ross joined retired Alaska captain Tony dela Cruz in tackling mental health not only within the league but also outside of it.
The two athletes said anyone could suffer from it and one step in helping those in need is to talk openly about the topic.
Ross said he had a close friend who took his own life because of his issues regarding his mental health, a predicament that could’ve been avoided if someone just listened.
“Once that happened to my friends in the States and to my friends out here, I felt like I could use that platform [being a PBA All-Star] to talk about it,” said Ross. “You never know who’s watching, you never know who’s listening.”
“Hopefully, they could use those words and won’t be scared to reach out to someone and try to get up.”
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