MONTREAL, May 22, 2020 /CNW Telbec/ - Roméo Dallaire, retired ex-senator and lieutenant general of the Canadian Armed Forces, launches Building Hope – The movement with the Douglas Foundation to raise Canadians' awareness about mental health issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Mr. Dallaire encourages the public to support the movement to help people suffering from mental health problems and to encourage the Douglas Mental Health University Institute, the second most important research and care center for mental health in Canada.
A recent study done by ACS-Leger in partnership with the Douglas Foundation shows that 22% of women and 17% of men experienced a prevalence of moderate to high depressive symptoms during the pandemic. More than a third (37.8%) of young adults aged 18 to 24 reported similar symptoms associated with depression, a rate 3.5 times higher than normal.
"Some people were already suffering from mental illness before this crisis began, while many others will inevitably develop symptoms as a result of the pandemic. […] We need resources to face this great challenge now and to protect the mental wellbeing of the population as we go forward", says Mr. Dallaire, discussing the problems caused by the pandemic for people living with mental illness. According to him, Canada is at "war" against an invisible threat that should not be underestimated because of its consequences on public health as well as the psychological distress it creates.
Mr. Dallaire, who suffers from a post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) himself, argues that it is essential to initiate a mental health movement with the Douglas. "I believe in their expertise and know-how to navigate the current situation and treat those who are suffering because of COVID-19. With this campaign, the organization is positioning itself as a key player for mental health in Quebec", he adds, explaining what prompted him to launch Building Hope – The movement.
Created in 1972, the Douglas Foundation's mission is to finance the development of the Douglas Institute: patient care, research in neuroscience and mental health, and education and training.
To lear more about the movement, the study or to schedule an interview with Mr. Roméo Dallaire:
SOURCE Foundation Douglas
For further information: Michel Jean, Project Manager, (514) 618-4929