October 10th marks World Mental Health Day. The importance of this day is to raise awareness about mental health issues and be a reminder of the work still required to make mental health care and supports available for all people worldwide. While mental health has become a more common topic in workplaces, schools, and communities in recent years, many barriers continue that stop people from accessing care including stigma. Stigma and discrimination against individuals living with mental health concerns are reported as one of the greatest barriers to people living a full and satisfying life. Acknowledging World Mental Health Day provides the opportunity to help reduce the stigma so that more people can reach out for help.
Each year the World Mental Health Organization chooses a theme for World Mental Health Day. The theme for 2019 is suicide prevention. According to the WHO, every 40 seconds someone in the world loses their life to suicide, which is about 800,000 lives lost each year. For every suicide, there are at least 20 more attempts. There is an urgent need for more resources for identifying and supporting people in need, and to strengthen mental health supports in all social and care systems. On this day, take the time to talk to colleagues, friends, and family members about mental health and familiarize yourself with the various supports available.
Mental Wellness Manager
Boyle Street Community Services