Back during Mental Health Month, we talked about how you can advocate like a celebrity, but…
…what about the charities and organizations through which the celebrities are advocating? What are they DOING with these organizations to really spread the word about mental health awareness?
From working with existing mental health organizations to launching their own mental health charities, these five celebrities (and their respective groups!) are working hard to raise mental health awareness, teach people about mental health resources, and eradicate the stigma that surrounds mental illness.
1. HOUSE and the National Alliance on Mental Illness
Hugh Laurie and the rest of the cast of HOUSE have been supporting the National Alliance On Mental Illness (NAMI) since 2007 with various press conferences, campaigns, and even cool t-shirts sporting certain “House-isms” to help raise money for the organization. (Unfortunately, the existence of these shirts comes and goes; the first one, released in 2007, raised more than $150,000 for NAMI, and the super cool “Normal’s Overrated” shirt that I have is no longer available.)
2. Greg Montgomery and the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance
The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) has worked with several celebrities over the years, but most recently the organization is collaborating with former All-Pro NFL punter Greg Montgomery. Montgomery has spent years battling and finally learning to manage bipolar disorder and now wants to help others do the same. NFL Films featured his documentary, he’s acted as chair at NAMIWalks in his home state of Michigan, he presented at the Mental Health America 2011 Conference, he’s working with Screening for Mental Health to help people realize their mental health resources, and now the DBSA will feature him in their October newsletter as well as host a live telechat with him in November.
3. Glenn Close and Bring Change 2 Mind
With the help of the Child and Adolescent Bipolar Foundation (CABF), Fountain House, and the International Mental Health Research Organization (IMHRO), Glenn Close and her sister, who lives with bipolar disorder, launched Bring Change 2 Mind back in 2009 with the intention of eradicating stigma and providing information about mental health resources, and since then the award-winning actress has participated in various campaigns and events, and even had her genome mapped in the name of science.
4. Joey Pants and No Kidding, Me Too!
Joey Pantoliano, or Joey Pants, founded No Kidding, Me Too! to begin working toward the day when people are finally comfortable enough to look at someone who tells you she has depression, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia and reply with (you guessed it), “No kidding? Me too!” Joey and the NKM2 team have put forth remarkable mental health advocacy efforts since launching the foundation, from releasing a documentary to visiting troops in Iraq, and the organization’s advisory board boasts a slew of Joey’s famous friends who not only care, but also have personal experience with mental health and substance abuse issues.
5. Paige Hemmis and Blueprint for Hope
Spurred to action by her own battles with depression, Paige Hemmis of ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition worked with the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) to create Blueprint for Hope back in 2009. Blueprint for Hope is a campaign geared toward helping people seek resources and develop a “blueprint” for managing their illness. The campaign has since visited numerous communities across the country and continues to provide several informational resources and tools.
This Celebrity Psychings post honors World Mental Health Day (October 10, 2011) and is part of the Psych Central World Mental Health Day Blog Party.
For similar posts, as well as information about and resources for mental health and emotional wellness, visit www.psychcentral.com.