- Category: Health
- Created on Sunday, 19 May 2013 13:10
San Diego, California - Emotional and behavioral challenges affect one in five children each year. Mental illness affects one in four adults. Yet the fear of being rejected and the stigma associated with these challenges keeps some adults from getting the help they need for their children and for themselves.
Hundreds of San Diegans of all ages will join County officials and behavioral health experts on Saturday, May 18, to encourage people to change the misconceptions of emotional and behavioral challenges and mental illness and to recognize May as Mental Health Month.
The annual event will take place from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at Heritage Park in Old Town. This year’s theme is “Be Brave: Stomp Out Stigma.” The event is free and will feature live entertainment, face painting and activities for the whole family. The first 200 families will also receive a tote bag. A special screening of Disney’s “Brave,” a part of the County Parks and Recreation’s “Movies in the Park” summer series, will take place at dusk, following the resource fair.
“It is important for San Diegans to know that help is available,” said County Supervisor Dave Roberts, District Three. “There are many misconceptions about mental illness. Programs like this help us to better understand mental illness, and to learn the early signs of emotional and behavioral challenges.”
This behavioral health awareness event is an opportunity for the County and its partners to let everyone know help is available to overcome emotional and behavioral challenges and mental illness. The event is intended for children, youth and families, and will also include: laughter yoga sessions, performances by San Pasqual Academy’s Glee Club and Step Team, New Alternatives’ Stomp Team, a children’s art exhibit, a rock climbing wall and an obstacle course. The event supports Live Well, San Diego!, the County’s ongoing initiative to improve the health, safety and well-being of residents.
“Mental health is just as important as physical well-being,” said Nick Macchione, director of the County Health and Human Services Agency. “All of us play a role in eliminating stigma and helping people know the signs of emotional and behavioral challenges.”
For more information about this year’s mental health event, visit the May is Mental Health Month website or call Stephanie Wells at (619) 563-2721.