Stories of resilience to be featured at 16th annual Mayor’s Initiative for World Mental Health Day

All invited to attend free event October 8

GUELPH, ON, October 2, 2015 – The public is invited to join Mayor Cam Guthrie for a free event to mark World Mental Health Day, to be held October 8 at 11:30 a.m. at Guelph City Hall.

The event will feature two speakers who will share their perspectives on mental health and resiliency. Debbie Bodkin served as a Sergeant with the Waterloo Regional Police Service for 24 years and worked in overseas missions in Kosovo, Chad and Sudan working with crimes against humanity. She will share her struggle and journey back to mental health. Adrienne Crowder is an expert in the wellness and organizational health fields, having served for many years as an educator, counsellor, researcher, coach and trainer.

As part of the event, an art exhibit called The Community Puzzle: Piecing Together Our Recovery will be on display in the City Hall Galleria. The piece is a Spark of Brilliance project that involved more than 60 people with lived experience of mental health and/or addictions issues. Spark of Brilliance is a community-based mental health initiative that promotes healing, recovery and discovery through the expressive arts.

“I’m pleased to continue the tradition of the Mayor’s Initiative for World Mental Health Day,” said Mayor Cam Guthrie. “There is still a stigma attached to mental health issues. Together, we need to break through the stigma by talking about it, sharing our stories, and learning about local resources.”

The event is no cost, but attendees are asked to register at http://2015guelphmimh.eventbrite.ca.

World Mental Health Day is observed in 112 countries on six continents. The Guelph Mayor’s Initiative was begun in 2000 by former Mayor Joe Young, and has continued annually ever since. It aims to promote mental health, reduce the stigma associated with mental illness, raise awareness of mental health supports available in Guelph and Wellington, and foster positive action among policy-makers.

The Mayor’s Initiative is generously sponsored by the Canadian Mental Health Association of Waterloo Wellington Dufferin; Homewood Health Centre; Spark of Brilliance; Torchlight; Family Counselling and Support Services; and the City of Guelph.

For more information

Kate Sullivan
Communications Assistant
Mayor’s Office
519-822-1260 extension 2558
Kate.sullivan@guelph.ca