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Sessions seek to break mental health stigma

SIMCOE, JANUARY 19, 2010 – Good mental health is just as critical to a person’s overall health as staying active and eating healthy foods, yet the former receives only a fraction of the attention the latter two receive in the media and water cooler discussions at work.


“Despite the fact that one in five Canadians will develop a mental health condition at some point in their life, a stigma persists,” noted Marilyn Antkiw, Public Health Nurse with the Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit. “How can we expect to address an issue that we know is affecting our neighbours, our relatives, or ourselves if we are not willing to openly discuss it?”

In an attempt to start the discussions, the Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit has partnered with the Lynnville United Church to deliver a series of sessions which will cover various mental health issues that affect our community.

The free awareness sessions are an opportunity for community members to connect, discuss and learn more about mental health topics including stress, dementia, suicide and the stigma attached to mental health issues. Local experts on various mental health issues will give brief presentations and facilitate the discussions that follow.

Sessions will be held every Tuesday in February from 10 a.m. until noon at the Lynnville United Church hall, located at 1418 Windham Rd. 11. Light refreshments will be provided.


The topics and dates for the sessions are:
Feb. 1 – Reducing the Stigma of Mental Illness
Feb. 8 – Managing Stress
Feb. 15 – Suicide Awareness and Prevention
Feb. 22 – Rising Tide: The Impact of Dementia in Haldimand-Norfolk

For more information about the sessions, contact Marilyn Antkiw at 519-426-6170 ext. 3252 or Marion Brown at 519-426-8660.


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Media contact:
Marilyn Antkiw
Public Health Nurse
Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit
519-426-6170 Ext. 3252
[email protected]