Across Canada, mental health organizations, schools, community groups and concerned volunteers are planning walks, runs, rides and other physical and social activities to raise funds for mental health awareness. June 4 marks the 6th Annual Agassiz-Harrison Walk to Defeat Depression.
“So many people are reluctant to reach out because there’s such stigma attached to mental illness, if we were to raise awareness about it the walls would begin to break. Mental health is just as important as physical health, it’s not a sign of weakness, and it’s a fact of life — I have been deeply affected by it as has my family and I’m passionate about it,” said event organizer Andrea McRae.
Funds raised go to participating organizations that provide much needed local community mental health support and services. This year, the local walk organizers have chosen to partner with The Help Project and Agassiz Harrison Community Services.
Seventy five percent of funds raised come back to the community with the remainder going to the Mood Disorders Society of Canada to be used for mental health programming.
Mood Disorders Society of Canada is a national health charity committed to ensuring the voices of people with mental illness, family members and caregivers are heard on issues relation to mental illness and mental health; particularly with regard to PTSD, anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder and other associated mood disorders.
Around 20 percent of Canadians will experience a mental health issue or problem each year and the World Health Organization has predicted that depression will become the second leading cause of disability in the world by 2020.
As part of the fundraising campaign the Walk to Defeat Depression group is hosting a Paint-Nite at the Agassiz Legion on Friday Apr. 21.
The painting chosen for the event depicts a hummingbird. The hummingbird symbolizes great courage, determination, flexibility and adaptability, all important in the struggle with mental health issues.
Tickets for this event are $45 and although they are purchased on line they can also be purchased by contacting Andrea McRae prior to the event. Everyone leaves with their own painting and the knowledge that they have supported the effort to raise awareness and funds about depression and other mental health topics.
Agassiz-Harrison Defeat Depression are also sponsoring a draw by donation on an Electra 7 speed Ladies Cruiser bicycle.
For more information or to purchase tickets contact Andrea at 604-819-9621 or email@example.com.