Each year, World Mental Health Day on 10 October reminds individuals, organisations and governments alike of the importance of mental health. This year’s focus on suicide prevention is especially poignant, because it is a significant global public health problem, according to the World Health Organisation.
Every 40 seconds, somewhere in the world a person dies by suicide. Suicides affect people of all age groups in all countries, including persons with disabilities. And, yet, suicides are preventable.
This World Mental Health Day 2019 is a two-fold call to action. First, is to show others you care about them and let people who are struggling know that they are not alone. Second, is to raise awareness and call on leaders to recognise mental health as a health issue in need of support.
Uniting voices in support of Speak Your Mind
CBM supports the new global civil society campaign Speak Your Mind, which pledges “to secure meaningful and urgent action from […] governments, demanding they invest in our mental health.”
Powered by the United for Global Mental Health movement, the campaign launched a global voice petition for mental health for all at the United Nations on 23 September 2019.
Since then, people from all over the world have been calling on leaders to act through the #speakyourmind message.
The idea is for persons to “Speak Your Mind” for 40 seconds to political leaders, asking them to invest in mental health, educate the public and empower people with lived experience and collaborate with them to develop and deliver more effective, inclusive mental health systems that uphold human rights.
Why 40 seconds? Because every 40 seconds someone dies by suicide in the world. That’s 800,000 people every year.
CBM addresses mental health among persons with disabilities
With a focus on the most marginalised people in the poorest countries, CBM and its partners have traditionally sought to address the huge gap in services available in many countries by working with governments to strengthen the health system and make care and support available more locally.
At the same time, CBM recognises that the way that people are treated in society is probably even more important than services, we have engaged in work to change attitudes and challenge stigma, and to change discriminatory laws and practices, mainly by helping people affected by mental health problems to speak out about their own priorities.
This culmination of 15 years of learning, growing and empowering in mental health at CBM resulted in the launch of CBM's Community Mental Health Initiative earlier this year on World Health Day.
Our partners all around the world will be celebrating World Mental Health Day in their own countries, with the support of CBM.