MONTRÉAL, Oct. 5, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - To celebrate the start of Mental Illness Awareness Week, over 1200 people are currenlty walking a 5 km circuit in downtown Montréal today for a common goal: to fight the stigma of mental illness. What better than a community walk to help put an end to the stigma of mental illness so that people in need can ask for help without feeling afraid?
One out of five Canadians will experience mental illness in their lifetime1 and the World Health Organization says that depression will represent the leading cause of disability throughout the world by 2020.
"Mental health problems are a reality that affects everyone, both directly and indirectly. Stigma often prevents people from expressing their pain, which stops them from asking for help," stated Jacques Hendlisz, a member of the Board of Directors of the MONTRÉAL WALKS for mental health Foundation.
Support from two exceptional partners
MONTRÉAL WALKS for mental health is supported by Bell Let's Talk and Lundbeck.
"Bell Let's Talk is proud to partner again this year with MONTRÉAL WALKS for mental health to fight the stigma of mental illness," said Marie-Josée Boivin, Vice-President, Human Resources and Bell's workplace mental health program lead. "Everyone can help make a difference by joining in the conversation so that people living with mental illness can get the help they need without fear of being stigmatized."
"According to the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, every day 500,000 Canadians are absent from work because of a mental health disorder,"2 stated Patrick Cashman, President and General Manager of Lundbeck Canada. "We believe that everyone who lives with these problems deserves all the help they need, especially support from their families and loved ones. This will happen when we break down prejudice," he added.
About the MONTRÉAL WALKS for Mental Health Foundation
Made up of eleven health care institutions and organizations, MONTRÉAL WALKS for Mental Health is a foundation whose mission is to increase public awareness about mental health and eliminate stigma and discrimination towards people who live with a mental illness and those who support them. The foundation fulfills its mission through the organization of an annual walk. www.mtlmarche.com
About Bell Let's Talk
Bell Let's Talk promotes Canadian mental health with national awareness and anti-stigma campaigns, like Clara's Big Ride for Bell Let's Talk and Bell Let's Talk Day, and significant Bell funding of community care and access, research, and workplace initiatives. To learn more, visit Bell.ca/Let's Talk.
Established in Montreal since 1995, Lundbeck Canada is a subsidiary of H. Lundbeck A/S, an international pharmaceutical company dedicated to research. With a primary focus on mental health disorders and a recent entry into the field of oncology, Lundbeck places the needs of those who live with these illnesses at the heart of its priorities. Whether it is conducting fundamental research, developing innovative medications or forging partnerships, Lundbeck constantly challenges the status quo because Canadians with mental illness or cancer deserve better. lundbeck.com/ca/en
SOURCE: Institut universitaire en santé mentale de Montréal
For further information: Catherine Dion, Communications Department - Institut universitaire en santé mentale de Montréal, Phone: 514-251-4000, extension 2986 - Cell: 514-235-4036, [email protected]