Mental Health Week connects communities

Morning Star Staff

National Mental Health Week turns 60 this May and the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) is inviting Vernon to celebrate.

The annual awareness week, May 1-7 this year, encourages everyone to learn, talk, reflect and engage with others on all issues relating to mental health and well being.

“Mental Health Week is about connecting communities, building respect for people with mental illness, and remembering the things we can do every day to build mentally healthy lifestyles — for both ourselves and our children,” said Sandy Rysen, executive director, CMHA Vernon.

This year’s theme in B.C., “Thank You for Trusting Me,” focuses on speaking of the importance of having people you can trust when faced with challenges and the rewards of being able to provide that support to others. It is a reminder of the role each of us can play in promoting the well being of those we care about and to take the time to thank those who are part of each individual’s support network.

Mental Health Week was founded nationally by CMHA and has grown each year with community activities across the country. CMHA Vernon has celebrated Mental Health Week for 52 years.

Mental Health Week is a time for everyone to learn what they can do to promote good mental health for themselves, their families and those around them.

Simple things to promote good mental health include:

n Adopt an attitude of gratitude by thinking about things and people that are appreciated, and saying so.

n Nurture relationships, which can be the most rewarding parts of life but need time for maintenance.

n Take time out for tea, or a good book, or a walk in the park, relaxation and reflection and sharing those times with others.

n Eat right, keep fit to keep the mind and body healthy for mood balance and relieving stress.

n Get a lifestyle tune-up by seeking professional help for life challenges.

For more information about Mental Health Week see www.mentalhealthweek.ca or www.vernon.cmha.bc.ca or call 250-542-3114.