WORLD FEDERATION FOR MENTAL HEALTH 2022
WORLD MENTAL HEALTH GLOBAL AWARENESS CAMPAIGN
WORLD MENTAL HEALTH DAY THEME
MAKE MENTAL HEALTH & WELL-BEING FOR ALL A GLOBAL PRIORITY
On 10 October 2022 we will be celebrating World Mental Health Day with the theme ‘Make Mental Health & Well-Being for All a Global Priority’ a theme chosen by a global vote that was open to the public, including WFMH members, stakeholders, and supporters.
Our world is reeling from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, wars, displacement, and the climate emergency, all of which have consequences for the well-being of world citizens. Rates of people experiencing suicidal ideas are increasing globally and people with lived experiences of mental health, their families and other populations continue to tell us that their mental health well-being is not always at the forefront of governments, those who pay for services or society at large. Stigma and discrimination continue to be a barrier to social inclusion and access to the right care.
There are however some good news messages.
There is increasing evidence that the prevention of mental ill health is possible by using both general and targeted evidence-based interventions. These can improve outcomes for individuals across the spectrum of mental disorder and life course. We can all play our part in increasing awareness about what preventive mental health interventions work.
We need to work with governments and other stakeholders to apply universal preventive measures that reduce the risk of mental ill-health. This includes the promotion of social inclusion policies, support and direct investment for vulnerable populations and investment in communities and young people to reduce crime. We need to support well-being interventions across the life course from pregnancy, birth, early childhood, early teens, adulthood to older adulthood – we need to improve the social determinants of health and address mental health stigma and discrimination.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) adopted at the 70th Session of the UN General Assembly in 2015 cannot be achieved unless we make a meaningful investment in improving mental well-being for all. The COVID 19 pandemic has shown that many health systems are ill-prepared to deal with the physical and mental health challenges faced by their populations.
Employers generally are unprepared. The culture of our workplaces needs to support the mental health and well-being of the workforce, so that employers are better prepared to support mental health well-being in the working population. There is a need to establish 2 global mental health and well-being targets that can bring together evidence that captures the social determinants of health, including promoting exercise, widening access to good nutrition and food, all of which will have a positive impact on mental health and well-being.
The mental health and well-being of many health, social care and frontline workers has been affected by the pandemic and systems need to be strengthened to better support such staff during times of crisis and challenge.
COVID 19 has shown that no nation was prepared for the associated mental health crisis and the effects of long Covid. We need a new compact for mental health.
Society and citizens’ matter.
Civil society’s role needs to be enhanced and enabled so that people can make their own contribution to mental health and well-being in their communities and workplaces, including harnessing peer support.
Governments have a role to play. Collaboration between governments, citizens and planners needs to be strengthened. Policy change is often seen as a tool to deliver care packages, but this should not be the case. Policies should be regarded as care packages. The international community and those who pay for services need to understand this so that we can develop truly joined up processes that deliver mental health and well-being to all our population. No community and no individual should be left behind.
The 2022 World Mental Health Day theme ‘Make Mental Health & Well-Being for All a Global Priority’ provides us with an opportunity to re-kindle our efforts to make the world a better place.
We are at cross-roads. It is imperative to take the correct path.
We invite you to join this year’s World Mental Health Day campaign.
Professor Gabriel Ivbijaro MBE JP
WFMH Secretary General
12 April 2022