Mental Illness Awareness Week 2015

October 8, 2015

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Mental Illness Awareness Week 2015

All of us are Affected by Mental Illness in One Form or Another

It doesn’t get nearly as much attention as it should. Most of the time it is considered a “hush-hush” topic. When it is referred to, it is mostly in a bad light. That’s right, we’re talking about mental illness.

October 4th through the 10th the UNH Social Work Department hosting the 11th annual Mental Illness Awareness Week. UNH has teamed up with the National Alliance on Mental Illness to dedicate an entire week to focusing on a topic we’re all touched by.

Acclaimed figures such as Demi Lovato, Brooke Shields, Jim Carrey and the late Robin Williams have changed the way we look at mental illness, but it isn’t enough. People who struggle with mental illness often go it alone-- ashamed, and fearing they might be treated differently, whether by their peers, work, or society as a whole. Programs like MIAW are trying to break these stigmas, and encourage people to seek treatment.

Dignity, Not Disgrace. Every day during the first week of October visit “Stiggy” the elephant in Dimond library. This sculptural piece of artwork stimulates discussion and breaks the silence related to mental illness. In years past, the display has been a showered with messages written by professors and students alike, disclosing information about his or her struggle with mental illness.

Never Walk Alone. Walk for awareness, walk for recovery from mental illness. The Human Behavior and Social Environment III Class at UNH will walk in the Annual NAMI-NH Walk for Recovery from Mental Illness. All are welcome. Sign up either by heading to the website or email Tiffany Hemcher or Casey Carson. Team check-in is at 9:00 AM at the Soccer Fields on South Fruit Street, Concord, New Hampshire and the walk takes place at 10:30 AM. Don’t miss out on this unifying cause.

Change the Conversation. On Wednesday, October 7th guest speakers such as, Sean “Sem” Moundas, Sharon Murphy, as well as The National Alliance on Mental Illness New Hampshire branch and more hold a presentation discussing topics surrounding mental illness. Join the enlightening conversation of how mental illness is seen through the public eye, 6 PM in the Memorial Union Building, Theater II.

Feel free to email Will Lusenhop with any of your questions, or call him at 862-5257. Remember: our illnesses don’t define us. It doesn’t mean you’re weak. It doesn’t make you a burden.

If you or someone you know needs a helping hand, the UNH Counseling Center is there to help.


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