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Mental Health
Awareness Month

May is Mental Health Awareness Month

May is Mental Health month when efforts to understand and treat mental illness are made visible. The Centers for Disease Control says that one-half of US adults will develop a mental illness sometime during their lifetimes. This has been made worse by the recent COVID pandemic. Twenty two percent of youth under age 18 will experience an episode of mental illness during a given year. Only 80% of those who live with mental illness ever receive the help they need to deal with their disease – often because of the stigma surrounding it.


Sometimes the stigma is internal: not wanting to acknowledge that this mental illness is a condition that must be lived with. Other times it is external: both adults and youth attest to the fact that friends sometimes move away from them when they reveal their mental illness. People with mental illness are our family members, our co-workers, our friends, and ourselves. One in four of us is touched by mental illness. Often we turn first to our faith communities who may or may not know what to do to help. If we want to be caring communities we must begin by making a strong statement against the stigma of mental illness.


Mental Health Matters

St. Francis in the Foothills is helping through its Mental Health Ministry. Our mission is to educate about mental illness, remove the stigma around it and advocate for more support of mental health treatment and funding. Please join us in this effort by wearing the green ribbon we will be passing out at services this month. This way you can show your commitment to removing the stigma surrounding mental illness that creates a terrible silence and darkness. Help us bring light to this darkness.


Diane Wilson, Chair St. Francis Mental Health Ministry

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