Baie Verte woman overcoming own struggles with mental illness to help others
BAIE VERTE, N.L. — If times throughout Ashley Mullins life have felt like a tornado, she feels really good to be seeing blue skies right now.
The RNC in Labrador West has joined numerous organizations and community groups in the area to promote the Bell Let’s Talk Day initiative.
For every text, call, tweet, Instagram post, Facebook video view and Snapchat geofilter used on Wednesday, Bell will donate five cents to mental health initiatives across the country.
As a lead-up to Bell Let’s Talk Day, Const. Krista Miller has been visiting local businesses, both towns, the high school, fire department, hospital and other groups in the area taking photos of representatives doing their part to promote the campaign.
She’s also compiling a video of community members reaching out to others to help end the stigma still associated with mental illness.
The information the officer is collecting will be uploaded to the RNC’s social media sites on Wednesday morning.
Miller said she’s been getting a great response from the community leading up to Bell Let’s Talk Day.
“Every group I’ve visited are ready to assist in getting the message out... We’re all in this together.”
In a story published in The Telegram on Nov. 24, 2016, reporter James McLeod noted that Health Minister John Haggie confirmed in the House of Assembly that five people had taken their own lives in Labrador West in the past eight months.
Haggie said because of the spike in suicides extra counsellors were put in place.
Miller said it’s important to get the word out that there is help for those who suffer from mental illness.
She encourages people to talk about their feelings with someone they trust.
“People can go to their local pastor, priest, hospital, police, fire department, co-workers, friends and family and reach out and talk about mental health,” Miller said.
Miller teaches a two-day mental health first aid course which is aimed at people interacting with youth.
Mental health first aid is similar to first aid, Miller said, however, she said, rather than assisting with a physical injury, those taking the course learn how to help people battling depression and other mental illnesses.
The course, which is a partnership between the RNC and Bell, is offered free of charge to any community members who’d like to avail of the training.
Miller said the RNC is also working to enhance its response to people with mental health issues.
“We respond to these calls on a regular basis. We want the community to look to us as an outlet that can assist them in getting the help that they need.”
It’s important to have the conversation about mental health not only on Let’s Talk Day but every day of the year, Miller said.
“The more conversation we have around mental health, the more people we can help,” she said.
About the Let’s Talk Campaign
Source http: www.letstalk.bell.ca
In September 2010, Bell Let’s Talk began a new conversation about Canada’s mental health. At that time, most people were not talking about mental illness. But the numbers spoke volumes about the urgent need for action. Millions of Canadians, including leading personalities engaged in an open discussion about mental illness, offering new ideas and hope for those who struggle, with numbers growing every year.
As a result, institutions and organizations large and small in every region received new funding for access, care and research, from Bell Let’s Talk and from governments and corporations that have joined the cause. Bell's total donation to mental health programs now stands at $79,919,178.55. The company is well on its way to donating at least $100 million through 2020.