The Douglas Foundation launches the 2022 edition of Building Hope – The movement, a provincial awareness initiative to support research on mental health and patient care at the Douglas Mental Health University Institute.
Centered around the testimonial of Magalie who suffers from a borderline personality disorder, the campaign encourages the population to take action in the face of mental illness problems by making a donation to the organization or by sharing content available on their social platforms during the month of October.
The most recent data by the Government of Canada shows that one in three Canadians will be affected by a mental illness during their lifetime. Building Hope – The movement hopes to inspire people to take action by showing the true face of mental illness that goes beyond staggering statistics.
According to Laura Fish, President and CEO of the Douglas Foundation, “Magalie’s testimonial reminds us that psychiatric disorders are our collective responsibility, that we must build hope for these individuals whose lives have been affected by mental illness. The pandemic has shown the crucial needs that exist on many levels, whether we are thinking of funding research that allows us to improve the treatments that are offered or access to mental health care.”
Desjardins Group is joining the campaign and will match every donation made to the Foundation by October 31, up to a combined total of $50,000. “Mental health is a major challenge for our society, and we’re facing increasingly urgent needs in research and direct patient care. Our support will help people who really need it and also contribute to advancing mental health research and care,” said Guy Cormier, President and CEO of Desjardins Group.
The Douglas Institute observed an overall increase of 69% in the number of mental health requests for services at the Douglas over the last ten years before the COVID-19 pandemic. An upward trend that puts pressure on the clinical services and super-specialized programs developed at the Douglas Institute, some of which are offered throughout Quebec.
Despite a situation that may be worrisome, Dr. Gustavo Turecki, Scientific Director of the Douglas Research Center and Chief of Psychiatry at the CIUSSS Montreal West Island wants to be reassuring: “We have unique clinical expertise here at the Douglas that allows us to make discoveries that will improve people’s lives and enable them to recover.” According to the specialist, one of the obstacles to the deployment of scientific advances in mental health remains funding. “We need more resources to enhance our existing services and programs and deliver them to more people in need,” he says.
For Ms. Fish, the most important thing is that the campaign succeeds in touching the hearts of people and emboldens them to take action. “We need to highlight the importance of research to build hope for our patients and those who need help, but I think our greatest strength this year is to showcase real people like Magalie who tell us how mental health care and medication have changed their lives,” she concludes.
Building Hope – The movement will be held from October 10 to 31, 2022. It is possible to join the campaign by making a donation on the Douglas Foundation’s website or by sharing the content published on their social platforms throughout the month of October.
To watch Magalie’s testimonial: