Mental Health Day: Make Mental Health and Well-Being for all a Global Priority

Every year, the World Health Organization (WHO) selects a theme for World Mental Health Day to raise awareness and reflect on a pressing issue that people face worldwide. In October 2022, the theme is “Make mental health and well-being for everyone a global priority”. This is as important as it is close to us, especially after the struggles we faced in the past few years: Covid-19, protests for human rights, the war of 2022, global inflation hurting so many people, global warming, and so on. Together we can work towards a future where mental health is not something people should feel ashamed of but rather a human right, where well-being and mental health care are available to individuals everywhere in the World.

On Mental Health Day, we remind ourselves that even someone who appears calm and collected on the surface may not show the true reflection of their emotions. When our feelings become nightmares, it’s challenging to face them as we fear they’ll make us appear bad or different in the eyes of those around us.

Uniqueness and originality are usually praised in today’s society, especially after so much long-awaited change. Still, when we feel different and find it hard to cope with our thoughts, we tend to overlook them to integrate ourselves into the society we live in. We forget that we are all human and struggle is a part of life.
Not long ago, mental health was considered a condition that people were afraid to discuss. Today, we must accept that it is not something to be ashamed of. However, as we see our friends or family members or the person sitting next to us as the happiest in the World or the most alive in front of us, they may be the most insecure about themselves or others.

We all must embrace and deepen the weight and responsibility we give to mental health as individuals, societies and nations while giving it a higher value with our commitment and engagement across all fields. We can meet the mental health needs full scope by building a community-based network of affordable, accessible, quality services and supports.

Even though shame and prejudice remain obstacles to social inclusion, World Mental Health Day offers us the opportunity to raise awareness about which preventive mental health interventions work. Together we can foresee a world where mental health is respected, encouraged, and shielded from preconceptions. Every individual should be able to appreciate mental health and exercise their human rights equally, with care accessible to all.

We can come together and recognise the improvements achieved so far on this day and every day. We can work together in this field because we have to “Make mental health and well-being for all a global priority”.

Eleonora Venturini, Year 2, BA (Hons) Creative Writing and English Literature

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