Basseterre, St. Kitts, October 13, 2021 (SKNIS): Michele de la Coudray-Blake, Director of the Counselling Department in St. Kitts said that World Mental Health Day which is celebrated annually on October 10 is observed to raise awareness of mental health issues globally.
“The overall aim of World Mental Health Day is to bring focus to mental health issues so as to raise awareness of mental health issues around the world and mobilize efforts in support of mental health,” said Director de la Coudray-Blake, on the October 13 edition of Working for You. “It provides us an opportunity for stakeholders working with mental health issues to talk about their work, to talk about what happens in mental health and to identify the gaps, what needs to be done so that mental health, as much as possible, could be made a reality for people who are in need.”
Director de la Coudray-Blake said that the day is commemorated by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the organization sets a theme for discussion “in hopes that the rest of the world could then focus on that thematic area so that there would be education around the thematic area, there could be understanding and awareness.”
This year, the theme is “Mental Health in an Unequal World”.
“So we are looking at mental healthcare for all: let’s make it a reality. So mental healthcare in an unequal world and there is some significance to that because really this is saying to us that services, interventions and resources are not equally distributed,” she said. “And so it means then that if we are talking about mental health for all we are going to have to work on that and identify what the gaps are, why there are gaps, where the inequalities lie, and consequently, how to fix those inequalities.”
The director added that given the current COVID-19 environment it is extremely important to “identify the emerging mental health issues” so that “provision of services” could be made “ as much as possible.”
Based on information from WHO’s website, the organization works with Member States and partners to improve mental health of individuals and societies at large. This includes promoting mental well-being, the prevention of mental disorders and efforts to increase access to quality mental health care that respects people’s human rights.