May 1, 2017 marks the beginning of the 66th Annual Mental Health Week. The goals of the week include, but go beyond: reflecting on the importance of taking care of one’s mental health; demanding equality for mental health care in the universal health care system; and bringing greater awareness to the subject in order to eradicate the stigma that affects millions of people per day. How can you get involved this week?
- Use the #GetLoud hashtag on your Social Media. Spread The Word.
- Visit the Mental Health Week website to “Write Your MP”. The Mental Health Week team has drafted a generic letter addressed to your local MP and all you have to do is enter your address, create an e-signature and Submit.
- Join NVSN at the March for Mental Health on May 6th to strengthen our voice and demonstrate the importance of mental health care improvements.
NVSN was founded with the intention of engaging today’s youth in breaking down the stigma associated with mental health differences. Our goal isn’t just to encourage the general population to become more accepting and understanding, but also to encourage our friends and family who are living in silence to become more comfortable in sharing and seeking the help they need. Unfortunately, the latter is a lot easier said than done. Access to help, wait lists, and high costs are just a few areas that can be improved in our mental health care system. So what can we do?
On Launch Day, our goal at NVSN was to create a space where Canadian youth felt comfortable in accepting what they're going through, and comfortable enough to share that with others, whether with their friends and family, or privately via the NVSN Journal. Today, we’ve realized that we need to do more. We need more than just a space of comfort – we need a space that enables us to make progress. We need a space where we can actually get the professional help we need.
We are excited to introduce the NVSN Resources Page, a compiled list of free and low cost services available to the York Region and Toronto areas. Our team will work to update this list weekly to provide as many options as we can to our diverse following.
I also want to take the time to introduce NVSN’s theme for Spring/Summer 2017.
Health is health and it comes in different forms, including both mental and physical. Beyond that, we need to acknowledge that mental health itself comes in many different forms. Although there are fantastic initiatives out there discussing mainly Mood and Anxiety Disorders, sometimes this can limit people’s scope of what falls under the “Mental Health” umbrella. Over the course of Mental Health Week and the rest of the Spring/Summer 2017 season, we pledge to educate our readers on, and discuss the several types of mental health problems and disorders including substance-related disorders, eating disorders, psychotic disorders, and more.
I hope you're just as excited as I am for what’s coming this week and in the months ahead - chat soon!