Why We Care About Mental Health Awareness Week

This year, Mental Health Awareness Week is October 7 – 14, 2018. During this week our entire staff will wear t-shirts with a positive mental health message as a way to spread awareness on this very important issue. We at Well Being Therapy Center want you to know that we work hard for positive change in our communities, and will continue to advocate for you, even after you leave our office.

According to the Center for Disease (CDC), 1 in every 5 individuals struggle with mental illness. Depression and Anxiety affect millions in the U.S. each year, but research has found that a good portion of people are not getting help. According to a recent study compiled by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), approximately 9.3 million adults experience “mental illness” – that is, their condition impedes day-to-day activities, such as going to work. According to this recent study, only 63% of adults nationwide received mental health treatment.

Why is this, you wonder? It is largely due to the fact that we live in a world where there is still a lot of shame and stigma attached to mental health treatment. WBTC would like to be a part of the movement for change, so we’ve taken part in advocacy projects and we would like you all to know what we have accomplished so far:

  • We have been in contact with our NJ Senators offices and are working on drafting a NJ Bill that will mandate all NJ teachers to receive mental health training.
  • We have joined the National Association of Mental Illness (NAMI) and·were asked to attend this year’s conference.
  • We have presented programs at professional development training classes in our community, such as in our schools and police departments.
  • We will contribute educational materials for a new hospital outreach ·program for parents arriving with children at the ER due to mental health symptoms.
  • We are continually dedicated to making sure our team is trained in the most ·up to date mental health issues and interventions.
  • We are members of the Montville Township Sigma-Free Task Force.
  • We continue to act as a resource many local school districts for student, parent, and staff training.·
  • We spoke at a local school board meeting ·regarding the need for more mental health services and awareness in schools.
Inspired, I hope? Wondering how you can get involved?
Well you can. Your voice matters too! Don’t hesitate to take action.
You can call your Senator’s office and ask them to listen to your concerns.
If you are concerned about the lack of mental health awareness in you school’s district, you can call your Superintendent’s office and ask when their next Board of Ed meeting is. Attend the meeting; even ask to speak at the meeting. Verbalize your concerns to the Board of Ed and to the Superintendent.
Contact NAMI directly, and visit the NJ chapter online. NAMI New Jersey is a statewide nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of individuals and families affected by mental illness. Through education, support, advocacy and public awareness programs, NAMI NJ fosters understanding about mental illness, confronts stigma often associated with mental disorders, advocates for public policies that benefit those affected by mental illness, and promotes research into the causes, treatment and recovery
of mental health disorders.

Most importantly, remember that you are not alone.
We are here for you. We are here to help.

Here’s the Your Well Being,
Jodi Murphy, LCSW
Licensed Therapist