by Danielle Fritze, Vice President of Public Education and Design at Mental Health America
None of us have gone unaffected by the events of the last few years, but some of us might not realize just how much we have been impacted as we go about our daily lives.
We have been stuck in our homes (thanks, COVID!) and some of us have lost our homes. We continue to see our communities struggle with acts of violence and unrest. And extreme weather events remind us that nature is a powerful force to be respected, protected, and cherished.
On the other hand, we’ve also seen the resilience of the human spirit. People have reached out virtually to one another when they couldn’t be together in person, helped each other in times of need, and organized in the name of social justice. They have embraced outdoor activities, hobbies, and personal enrichment endeavors.
That’s why this year for Mental Health Month, we’re focusing on how surroundings impact mental health and calling for individuals to look around, look within.
This week Mental Health America released our 2023 Mental Health Month Toolkit, themed (you guessed it) Look Around, Look Within.
The toolkit can help individuals and organizations work smart as they are planning activities to raise mental health awareness during the month of May.
We’ve made it easy for you by providing potential activities, newsletter articles, social media images and post language, email signatures and zoom backgrounds, fact sheets, worksheets, posters, and a tip calendar (and more) for you to share.
Topics that we specifically address in the toolkit include:
- Safe and stable housing
- Healthy home environments
- Neighborhoods and towns
- The outdoors and nature
We not only help people understand how these topics impact mental health, we also provide actions people can take to change their surroundings in favor of their well-being, and suggestions for how to cope if change isn’t realistic.
We hope that you’ll download the 2023 Mental Health Month Toolkit to guide your planning for May and to share with the people in your community.
With your help, this can be our most successful Mental Health Month effort yet.