Nicola Longobardi

Among Those Four Walls
Location: Hong Kong
Nationality: Italian
Biography: Nicola Longobardi is an independent photographer, who is based in Hong Kong. At age 25, he was a student of the well-known Beijing Culture and Languages University in Beijing and during that period he decided to dedicate his life to photography.... read on
Public Story
Among Those Four Walls
Copyright nicola longobardi 2021
Date of Work 09/06/17 - 09/08/17
Updated 11/13/18
The Filipino society is, unfortunately, a rather violent society. Many people suffer violence since childhood. Almost the 20% of the Philippine people struggle for mental health disorder, approximately 20 million of people. But these data do not reflect reality. Mental illness is still stigmatised by the Filipino society. Many people prefer to be silent. Depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and post traumatic stress, are the stigma for which people are excluded, from society, from friends, from work. According to the 2008 National Demographic and Health Survey conducted by the National Statistics Office, one in five Filipino women age 15-49 has experienced physical violence since age 15. 
Women admitted to the National Center for Mental Health share a history of violence and abuse at the back. Some danced thinking they were still inside the bars or brothels where they were sold like any other commodity, without realising where they had ended up. Others had lost looks, as if looking at a place that was not what they had in front of their eyes. 
Others seemed healthy, but only because they had lost their memory because of too violent trauma. Usually the crises for them were manifested at night, so the doctors explained to me.
They are often found on the street and brought to the center. Abandoned without documents they will live indefinitely within the hospital.

With the 2017 health reform, mental illness will be integrated into the national health system. Many funds will be allocated to sensitise society against the stigma of people suffering from mental disorders. But for most of the women locked in this structure is too late. For them the future will be to live among those four walls.

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