STOMP OUT STIGMA Summit, an energetic day of education and conversation surrounding mental health

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1 in 7 youth in Manitoba were diagnosed with a mental disorder between 2009 and 2013. 75% of young Canadians with mental health problems don’t seek help

Brandon & Area SPIN (Suicide Prevention Implementation Network) partnered with the Mental Health Commission of Canada’s Headstrong Youth Anti-Stigma Initiative in 2014.  It is based on their award-winning Opening Minds program, which is an evidence-based approach to reducing stigma.

We know that high school is when many begin to experience symptoms often associated with mental health problems or mental illness.  However, because of stigma and a lack of understanding and education, many students don’t know who to turn to for help, or are too embarrassed or scared to discuss their feelings.  Stigma is destructive and makes people feel different and socially excluded.  It delays diagnoses and treatment and is a major barrier for those that need help.

SPIN will be hosting its 4TH STOMP OUT STIGMA Summit on February 27, 2020 at the Western Manitoba Centennial Auditorium  in Brandon.  Approximately 75 grade 9-12 students and staff from Brandon and surrounding rural schools will participate in an energetic day of education and conversation surrounding mental health, stigma and the importance of seeking help at a young age.  The students/teachers will listen to speakers with lived experience and participate in break-out sessions to explore stigmatizing beliefs and stereotypes.  The student and teacher champions will return with tools, ideas, and activities to be implemented locally in their schools following the summit.  This event is in partnership with SPIN, Prairie Mountain Health, Brandon School Division, Addiction Foundation of Manitoba, Child and Family Services of Western Manitoba, and the Canadian Mental Health Association MB/Winnipeg.

For more information, contact Jill Brown at info@spinbrandon.ca , 204-578-2713 or 204-573-9257.

The high schools that are participating are Rivers, Carberry, Pierson, Neepawa, Sioux Valley, Crocus Plains, and Prairie hope.

(submitted)