In recent years, a growing number of qualified mental health professionals have been surfacing on social media. Often seen as the source, rather than solution, of mental health problems, the platforms are allowing people like Alyssa Mancao to share mental health advice to thousands.
For Mancao, a ten-year licensed social worker based in Los Angles, it is filling a gap for so many who can access care through her platform.
“This position fell into my lap,” Mancao told The Big Issue. “I learned in graduate school that I can still be an advocate for social justice within the therapeutic one-on-one setting.”
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Mancao is the owner of a group therapy practice Alyssa Marie Wellness Inc. She joined Instagram in 2017 and now was 163,000 followers, growing her online platform by posting daily affirmations, inspirational quotes, and mental health advice.
She said: “It was important to create content that was digestible. I want to normalise a lot of what we go through. Oftentimes, we feel like we’re the only ones going through it or that we’re alone.
“I take a lot of inspiration from the sessions I have with my clients, conversations that I have with friends, and personal experiences to create posts that people can relate to.”