TORONTO, Jan. 29, 2018 /CNW/ - Eating disorders affect people of all genders, ages, classes, abilities, races, and ethnic backgrounds. As part of Eating Disorder Awareness Week 2018, eating disorder groups across Canada are coming together to launch a new campaign to reinforce the message that when it comes to eating disorders, ONE SIZE DOESN'T FIT ALL.
From February 1 to 7, the National Eating Disorder Information Centre (NEDIC) and other groups across Canada will host awareness-raising and educational activities in their communities to help dispel the myth that eating disorders are just a phase or a diet gone too far. Using the hashtags #7billionsizes and #EDAW2018 (or #SEMTA2018 in French), they will spread the message that eating disorders are serious biologically influenced mental illnesses with potentially life-threatening consequences for people across all demographics.
More than 60 municipalities across six provinces and territories will participate in Eating Disorders Awareness Week activities. Close to 40 notable landmarks will be lit in purple throughout the week to raise awareness of this important cause, including the CN Tower in Toronto, Reconciliation Bridge in Calgary, Rogers Arena in Vancouver and Watermark Theatre in North Rustico, Prince Edward Island.
"Through open and supportive dialogue, we can promote public understanding about these illnesses while also spreading hope to those affected in order to break the shame, stigma and silence that affect those living with an eating disorder," says Kelsey Johnston, Outreach & Education Coordinator at NEDIC.
Dr. Dan Andreae makes unprecedented gift to the National Eating Disorder Information Centre
NEDIC is proud to announce that Dr. Dan Andreae, Honorary Chair of NEDIC's Advisory Committee, has made an unprecedented $250,000 gift – the largest philanthropic contribution to NEDIC in its history. Dr. Andreae's historic gift will be used to support the helpline and instant chat's extended hours.
"It is so important to make as many services available to people as possible and I know that this gift will help achieve that goal," says Dr. Andreae.
"The anonymity and confidentiality of our helpline gives Canadians a chance to talk about their struggle. By extending our service hours, we are removing barriers to our services and further empowering individuals to discuss their experience and determine their next steps," says Suzanne Phillips, NEDIC Program Manager. "We are beyond grateful for Dr. Andreae's pioneering gift."
An estimated one million Canadians meet the diagnostic criteria for an eating disorder. Those seeking support can contact the NEDIC Helpline toll-free at 1-866-633-4220 from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. EST Monday to Thursday (until 5:00 p.m. on Friday). NEDIC also now offers an instant chat service, which can be accessed online at www.nedic.ca from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. EST Monday to Thursday (until 5:00 p.m. on Friday).
For more information about Eating Disorder Awareness Week 2018, visit www.nedic.ca.
The National Eating Disorder Information Centre (NEDIC) is a non-profit organization founded in 1985 to provide information and resources on eating disorders and food and weight preoccupation. NEDIC's main goal is to inform the public about eating disorders and related issues as mandated by the Mental Health Programs and Services division of the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. NEDIC is a program of the University Health Network in Toronto, Canada.
Toronto General & Western Hospital Foundation (TGWHF) raises funds for research, education and the enhancement of patient care at Toronto General and Toronto Western hospitals, as well as the Michener Institute of Education at UHN. Together with its donors, TGWHF is helping UHN pursue the knowledge that makes all our lives better. For more information, visit tgwhf.ca.
SOURCE National Eating Disorder Information Centre
For further information: Media enquiries: Suzanne Phillips, Program Manager, NEDIC, 416-340-4156 or [email protected]