One in five adults experience mental health difficulties in a given year. Perhaps you are struggling. There is a high likelihood that you know someone who is.
Having awareness – recognizing and acknowledging your difficulties and your need for help – is one of the most important parts of getting support for mental health issues. Why? Because many mental health issues improve greatly with the right support.
As summer draws to an official close, kids are back to school and family vacations are memories. Many of us are looking forward to pumpkin spice coffee, changing leaves, and – for those in many parts of the country – crisper, cooler weather.
For those who deal with depression and bipolar disorder, the changing seasons don’t mean a change in their day-to-day struggles. They face the same challenges related to treatment, medication, and coping skills all year and their families continue to look for ways to help them.
At Families for Depression Awareness, we help families recognize and cope with depression and bipolar disorder to get people well and prevent suicides. There are many actions you can take to help a loved one and to support suicide prevention in your community. We hope that World Suicide Prevention Day, September 10, gives you extra motivation to learn more and take action to help prevent suicides.
Since I started as Executive Director in June, I’ve met with hundreds of people that are involved in our work helping families. These have included numerous clinicians and mental health providers; elected officials; families who are currently providing care for a loved one who suffers from bipolar disorder or depression; folks who are themselves struggling to get well from their own condition; suicide loss survivors; teenagers wanting to help other teens understand mental illness by sharing their own stories; and dozens of colleagues in the world of mental health nonprofits.
In talking with nearly every one of these people I’ve come to understand how important community is in all of our lives – especially those of us dealing with depression, bipolar disorder, and suicide.
We're always keeping our eyes on what's happening in the news pertaining to mental health. Here are some of our favorite articles from this month!
July is National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month! In recognition of that, we wanted to share with you some resources available on the Families for Depression Awareness website that shed light on this important issue.
With one month as Executive Director of Families for Depression Awareness behind me, it’s even more evident to me that this organization is doing important, life-changing, and life-saving work.
FFDA Executive Director Marlin Collingwood with Arthur C. Evans, Ph.D., Commissioner, Department of Health and Intellectual disAbility Services, Philadelphia
Families for Depression Awareness was again well represented at The Kennedy Forum conference, held on June 9th in Boston. Executive Director Marlin Collingwood and Director of Programs and Marketing Susan Weinstein engaged in learning, dialogue, and networking with policymakers, educators, researchers, advocates, business leaders, providers, and people with the lived experience of mental health and substance use disorders. The Kennedy Forum event sought to advance critical discussions about the science, practice, financing, and delivery of care and services. In addition, as conference attendees Marlin and Susan were able to participate in discussions examining the future of mental health in this nation and abroad.
This year, we have been fortunate to receive sponsorship support from Lindner Center of HOPE, a nonprofit mental health center in Mason, Ohio. We are pleased to be partnering with an organization that is truly making a difference in the lives of individuals and families and bringing hope to so many who are struggling.
Our winter and spring calendars have been full of in-person trainings!
Just this month alone, we’ve been on the road from Malden to South Dennis, meeting with professionals, parents, community leaders, and teenagers.