What, pray tell, does World Mental Health Day actually mean? you may be asking.
Lucky for you the World Health Organization has come along as the answer to your prayers.
They write pithily on their site:
“World Mental Health Day raises public awareness about mental health issues. The day promotes open discussion of mental disorders, and investments in prevention, promotion and treatment services. This year the theme for the day is “Depression: A Global Crisis”.
Depression affects more than 350 million people of all ages, in all communities, and is a significant contributor to the global burden of disease. Although there are known effective treatments for depression, access to treatment is a problem in most countries and in some countries fewer than 10% of those who need it receive such treatment.”
The World Mental Health Survey, conducted in 17 countries, found that about 1 in 20 people reported having an episode of depression in the past year.
According to the World Health Organization, depressive disorders were ranked as the third leading cause of the global burden of disease in 2004 but will move into first place by 2030.
[Find out more about depression and its global burden here. Also see our related post, "The Decimating Damage of Depression: Vivid Numbers Plus a Visual.]
So, haven’t a clue what to do for the day?
Well, a blogger’s never at a loss–and neither is Psych Central. They invite you to join them for the Second Annual World Mental Health Day Blog Party–and who wants to miss a party?
They’re most encouraging about participating, writing, “participation in the blog party is easy. All you need do is commit to publishing a blog entry on Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2012, about a mental health issue that’s close to your heart.”
Psych Central is running the program in conjunction with the Carter Center (as in former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, who founded the Carter Center’s Mental Health Program in 1991) and you can read more about it here.
They’ll be posting links as they come in at http://blogs.psychcentral.com/mental-health-day/, and even if you don’t currently run a blog, that’s no object. Psych Central will publish it for you if you contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org. Otherwise just let them know when you’ve posted.
And don’t forget this nifty little badge you get to add to your post–which almost makes the whole thing worth it just for that.
Hope to hear from you Wednesday.