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Making It Easier to Talk About Mental Health
Date:5/1/2008

New Campaign Encourages Illinois Residents to Say it out loud

CHICAGO, May 1 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- With data suggesting that one in five Illinois residents is experiencing a mental health challenge at any one time, a new public education campaign was launched today to promote good mental health and to empower those living with a mental health issue to Say it out loud. The campaign seeks to promote good mental health for every child and adult in Illinois, lower the barriers that prevent people from either seeking or offering help and support, and build a larger and stronger base of community support for an effective network of treatment services and programs.

The new statewide public education and engagement campaign is jointly sponsored by the State of Illinois Department of Human Services, Division of Mental Health, and the Illinois Children's Mental Health Partnership, a network of more than 30 organizations across the state. While other campaigns have used emotional appeals and dramatic imagery to draw attention to the issue of mental health, Say it out loud reflects a strength-based approach that presents mental health as a critical component of overall health and well-being.

The campaign was unveiled today at a rally on Chicago's Navy Pier as the state began its annual observance of Mental Health Awareness Month, which Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich has proclaimed as Say it out loud Month for May 2008. Scores of mental health advocates joined those who are living today with mental health challenges at the rally, with many wearing the campaign's signature yellow T-shirt emblazoned with Say it out loud in blue.

"In today's stressful world, everything we do to promote good mental health in ourselves and the people we care about contributes to more healthy, balanced, productive, happy lives," said Lorrie Rickman Jones, Ph.D., Director of Mental Health for the Illinois Department of Human Services. "And help is available for
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SOURCE State of Illinois Department of Human Services, Divisionof Mental
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