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How are you feeling lately?

Today, October 10, is World Mental Health Day, and we know that we're speaking for everyone when we ask: how have you been feeling over the past six months?

Mental health is one of the biggest issues facing humanity the world over; it in fact dominates the human condition itself. And in our globalised, capitalist and frankly individualistic society, more and more of us are feeling the pressure of providing, succeeding, and too often, simply surviving, which has an immense impact on our mental health.

But add COVID-19 to the mix, and that's where we're finding ourselves this October. Hundreds of thousands of lost lives and grieving families, surges in unemployment across the world – tens of thousands of people unable to pay their rent. This pandemic has ripped through what was already precarious societies and has left millions of us anxious, depressed and lonely.

FairPlanet's weekly roundup this week is focused on this crucial world day and what it means to help one another with our mental health.

Read. Debate: Engage.

The good

we're breaking stigmas, together.

The overall objective of World Mental Health day is to raise awareness of mental health issues around the world and mobilise efforts in support of mental health.

The Day provides an opportunity for all of us, as well as those working in the realm mental health support, to talk about our experiences and our work, and what more needs to be done to make mental health care a reality for people worldwide.

The very existence of this international day means that we are breaking stigmas and barriers that have been associated with mental health for decades – normalising what it means to suffer from mental health and making sure everyone has the support system they need behind them.

Today there are thousands of local charities operating across the world, with 24-hour hotlines and in some cases anonymous apps and chatrooms available for an entire range of support needs. If there is one positive around mental health in 2020 is the collective work we are all doing to break down every last bit of stigma associated with suffering from mental health conditions and making sure we are all supporting one another, together.

If you want to find more resources on mental health, managing stress and how to find support, click HERE.

The bad

depression, anxiety and suicide are on the rise

Almost 800,000 people die by suicide every year, that means that 1 person dies from suicide every 40 seconds, putting suicide as the second leading cause of death in individuals aged 15-29 years.

What does it mean that young people are most susceptible to suffering from fatal cases of mental health? Have we failed our young by not equipping them with the tools and support they need? Or is it the ever-growing volatility of our world today that is impacting our future generations, leaders, innovators and changemakers the most?

Job insecurity, of course, has much to do with this, together with a growing precarity to our world. Throw into the mix the fear of climate change and you have yourself quite a powerful cocktail. But it doesn't stop there. On top of this, the rise of social media and technology at our fingertips is driving an entire generation of individuals to experience mental health conditions like never before.

The very premise of our phones, social media and all the technologies that keep us glued to our devices is built on the idea of addiction; of dopamine hits and of constructed lows that have us reaching for our phones again at the cost of our happiness.

Please visit CHT's website to read more about the problem at hand and learn about the important work this organisation does. On the website, you could also learn about ways to get involved, access toolkits, and make a donation.


Dear tech companies: protect our democracies and mental health!

by Yair Oded

The Center for Humane Technology works to change the attention-grabbing business model of tech companies and align them with humanity's best interest.
Mental health on FairPlanet
mental health

Mental health: the forgotten human right

by Ellen Nemitz

Suicide is a social problem, a symptom of a failed capitalism – in Japan, the Covid-19 quarantine brought a 20 per cent decrease in the number of suicides.
mental health uk

Neglect of mental health patients surges in UK

by Shira Jeczmien

A new investigation reveals negligence in care of mental health patients within the NHS could have been the cause behind 271 people.
errol graham

Starved to death after benefit payments stopped

by Gurmeet Singh

Errol Graham, a 57-year old man died in his home in Nottingham in June 2018, after having his benefit payments cut.
More resources
Click on the image to access more resources around mental health and COVID-19 from the official Mental Health Organisation website.