What is stigma and why are we trying to end it?
Stigma is a set of negative and often unfair beliefs that a society or group of people have about a particular issue (in this case, mental health conditions).
One in five adults in America is affected by a mental health condition. Despite its prevalence, mental illnesses often go undiagnosed; or, when they are, we often have a difficult time understanding or coping with the associated problems. There are many misconceptions about what mental illness is and what it means to live with a mental health condition.
Mental illness is a shared burden on communities. Conditions that go untreated have a real impact on the day-to-day workings of a company, from decreased employee productivity to lower morale. Mental health conditions and the associated stigma can greatly impact your place of employment. In fact, across the U. S., mental illness costs the economy about $200 billion in lost earnings each year.
NAMI-WRV offers a weekly support group for peers and teens. Additionally, a monthly support group for family members and a wide array of programming and services to individuals with mental health conditions are available. We have also joined together with NAMI affiliates across the country in the fight to end stigma by launching a campaign to be StigmaFree.
By participating in local events organized by NAMI-WRV throughout the year, your organization or business can help support individuals and families in the Wood River Valley and ensure we break the stigma associated with mental illness. We hope you’ll take some time to learn more about our StigmaFree community partnerships, and show your support by displaying a green StigmaFree ribbon.
Our StigmaFree campaign has developed ways for the greater community to help reduce/eliminate negative connotations commonly associated with mental illness. We hope you will consider taking the StigmaFree pledge, and participate in one (or more!) of the events coming up – all to help support our public education efforts, and to help those who experience mental health challenges.
Fact Sheets, Hand Outs and Mental Health Guides for your Workplace
- Working Well: How to Promote a Supportive Culture in the Workplace
- What You Need to Know about Mental Health
- Work and your Mental Health: A Guide for Employees
- Creating a StigmaFree Workplace: A Guide for Supervisors
- Supporting Mental Health in your Organization: A Guide for Leaders
You can also schedule a 25-minute HR presentation for your staff, discussing what mental health conditions look like in the workplace, how to manage challenges with clients, knowing the signs of emotional pain, understand resources and where to get help. Please call 208-481-0686 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for additional information.
“POWER Engineers had Christina and Brittany come present to a group of our employees regarding Mental Illness, the signs of Mental Illness and the resources available to our company and our employees. The NAMI-WRV HR-presentation & “Know the Five Signs” was educational, informative and a great start to having dialogue around this critical issue in today’s society. It created great discussion during the presentation but more importantly the conversations and education that take place following the presentation. We look forward to future partnership and teamwork with this incredible resource to our community.” HR Department at POWER Engineers
Below are a few community-wide opportunities to begin changing the conversation about mental health. By joining in these events, you and your organization can show your support for mental health awareness by promoting your organization as a StigmaFree Wood River Valley organization that will help to break down barriers of stigma in our community.
Every March, we host a “Journey to Wellness” art show where all mediums, all levels, were part of the art show, and the theme was what your interpretation of your journey to wellness may be. Whether it be a standard oil painting, a culinary discovery, or a ceramic bowl, were on display on what you feel like your path to wellness. We ask for donations in any medium or whatever your creative mind can think of. We will also accept any donation that you choose to contribute to the silent auction.
Every May, for Mental Health Awareness Month, we encourage leaders from the business sector, as well as non-profit, government & faith leaders, to take part in our Biking for Mental Wellness, a StigmaFree Ride. This family-friendly and leisurely bike ride that takes place for the entire month. We partner with the community to help encourage ridership on the trails listed in the “Travel the Gravel” map created by Quigley Map Studio, and to encourage riders to recognize that when you ride, you’re also riding for mental wellness!
Every September, NAMI-WRV is excited to tee off in our annual Swing Fore Recovery Golf Tournament, the 5B Open for Suicide Prevention & Recovery Month. Teams are invited to once again join for the month out on the greens with your friends and colleagues while participating in a unique team-building experience that supports important work within our community. There will be great prizes, and this is your opportunity to play on any golf course to support mental health and wellbeing programs!
Thank you to our generous sponsors that make this work possible!