Mental Illness Awareness Week (MIAW) is the first week of October every year. Congress established the program in 1990 as a way to recognize the work done by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). The goal is to raise awareness about mental health conditions. In 2020, it is especially crucial as the COVID pandemic is raising anxiety levels.
The theme for this year is “What People with Mental Illness Want You to Know.” What can you do to promote Mental Health Awareness Week? Find out with the help of Springfield Wellness Center by calling 844.334.4727.
MIAW 2020: What you Should Know
This year, the awareness campaign begins on October 4 and runs through the 10th. As with most years, the week coincides with related events such as:
- October 6 is the National Day of Prayer for Mental Illness Recovery and Understanding
- October 8 is National Depression Screening Day
- October 10 is World Mental Health Day and NAMI Walks National Day of Hope
During the week, mental health advocates will be working together to raise awareness through various activities worldwide.
One of the first things you can do is get educated on the various mental health conditions. You might be personally familiar with something like depression, but that is just one is many different afflictions.
Consider doing some research on your family to see what condition might have an impact on them. For instance, did you have a great uncle who developed post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after returning from the war? Is there someone in your family in recovery for a substance abuse disorder?
Make this week about much about raising awareness in your life as in that of others. It’s an excellent way to learn about different kinds of mental health disorders. While you are learning, look to see if your area offers free screening for each condition in your area and share that information with friends and on social media platforms.
Please do some research in your home town to see what different events they might have for this week. Often cities sponsor walks or marathons to raise funding and awareness during this week.
If there are none, consider setting one up. Call the health department or the mayor’s office to see about creating an event to promote mental health wellness. With everything that is going on right now, there may be virtual events. Search online to see what events national organization might be holding.
Take it Online
Start your personal Mental Health Awareness campaign on your favorite social media platforms. You can find social media banners and other graphics online and spend the whole week reminding your friends and followers to get screened and learn more about mental health.
Make sure to offer information about the different forms of mental illness, as well. You could post the symptoms of depression one day and of substance use disorders on another.
Consider Your Needs
Mental Illness Awareness Week is a good time to think about your mental health, too. Springfield Wellness Center can help if you have a mental health condition, a substance use disorder, or even a neurodegenerative disease such as Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s.
Services available at Springfield Wellness Center include:
There are also detox programs and outpatient substance abuse services. Springfield Wellness Center founder Paula Norris Mestayer is one of the pioneers of using Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) for substance abuse treatment.
Mental Illness Awareness Week is the first week of October. Make this the year you decide to help promote awareness about mental health and wellness. Give Springfield Wellness Center a call at 844.334.4727. We are here to help.