Where is the face of mental health?
Cam Smith 11/07/94- 01/12/18 and his Dad.
We wanted to follow up with you all to share the Mental Health Initiative that began at our last District Conference during Barry Fraser's year of District Governor service.
As many of us know, it is very difficult to find anyone not affected by a mental health issue- with a family member, or close friend. As I tell my personal story- I am amazed at people coming up to me afterwards, and thanking me for sharing- as they too, are going through, or have gone through, a personal struggle with a family member.
Sharing our story helps destigmatize our experience.  Whether a family member or close friend is going through depression/anxiety, Bipolar, Schizophrenia, Alzheimer's, or another form- it touches us all.

Immediate Past District Governor Barry Fraser (who started our Mental Health Initiative at the last District Conference), reviewed our progress at out last conference call in the following areas:

1)    Reducing the stigma of mental health
2)    Getting involved in the Rotary Action Group- through the Rotary International website.
3)    Engaging clubs to start a mental health committee
4)    Developing a Speakers Bureau

We have reached out to our Assistant Governors to let them know about our mental health initiative: Reducing the Stigma on Mental Health. We encourage our clubs to start a committee on mental health- and a great place to start is joining our mental health conference calls. Our next one is March 20th at 5:00 pm- 6:00 pm- those interested can follow up with their Assistant Governor for more details.
In addition, we are working through the process of having our Interact and Rotaract clubs become involved.
Finally, there are several upcoming conferences:
On Feb. 27 and 28 (two half days) in Chelsea.  

And the 17th annual U of M Depression Conference: One Size Does Not Fit All: Aligning Levels of Care to Student Mental Health Needs. The conference is free to students:
March 13 and 14th at the Rackham Graduate School Building in Ann Arbor Michigan.
Here is the link to the UM Depression Conference, if you know any students who want to attend (free), or $185 for adults: https://members.depressioncenter.org/docc/

Where is the face of mental health? Unfortunately, in too many places.