New campaign asks youth to sign declaration supporting change in the way we talk about mental health and support those living with a mental illness
TORONTO, Oct. 29, 2012 /CNW/ - Beginning today, youth across Canada are raising their voices to call BS on the way society fails to support mental health. It's all part of Let's Call BS, a new campaign launched by Partners for Mental Health that challenges youth to call out the way we currently talk about, act towards and support mental health - and then to step up to help change it.
Central to the campaign is the declaration that youth will sign to formally voice their support at www.callbs.ca.
"It is time to change the way young people's mental health is treated and supported across Canada," says Jeff Moat, President, Partners for Mental Health. "Despite almost one quarter of youth experiencing mental health problems or illnesses, family, peers and society continue to teach young people to ignore these feelings and remain silent, instilling a fear of being labelled. This way of thinking needs to stop today."
To open the campaign today, Partners for Mental Health is hosting the BS[ummit] in Toronto, that will include a gathering of young people and experts in the field of youth mental health for a real, unfiltered round table about the way youth mental health and mental illnesses are treated, funded and supported. The discussion will take place live in Toronto and will reach youth coast to coast via live broadcast at Facebook.com/partnersformh.
"We don't talk about mental health or mental illness," says Vanessa Furtado, an Ontario teen participating in today's summit. "I think that our generation acts as though it's not our issue, but we're seeing kids in our schools facing issues and suffering in silence, and some even dying by suicide because they couldn't or wouldn't get help."
Let's Call BS is a campaign for youth activated by youth, based on the idea that today's youth can be the generation to significantly change the face of mental health in Canada by making it their issue.
People looking to get more involved in the Let's Call BS movement can visit www.callbs.ca for ideas on how to spread the word throughout their schools and communities. The site will also invite youth to share their own "BS" stories and experiences to a Living Wall, and check out what others are calling out.
The campaign, which runs until November 29, will reach youth via Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, in Empire movie theatres, on the street, through MuchMusic, MTV, MusiquePlus and by word-of-mouth.
"Changing the way that young people talk about, act towards and support mental health is a massive undertaking," concludes Moat. "We need thousands of people to raise their voices together to call BS on the current system if we're going to make the kind of difference this generation so desperately needs."
About Partners for Mental Health
Partners for Mental Health is a national, charitable organization dedicated to transforming the way Canadians think about, act towards and treat mental health and mental illness. Its mission is to engage millions of Canadians to take action to support mental health by participating in campaigns, events and activities that promote mental health and well-being, contacting politicians to influence policy, volunteering or fundraising.
SOURCE: Partners for Mental Health
For further information:
416-482-0772 / firstname.lastname@example.org