Mental Health Awareness Month Kicks Off with a Success

Monday, May 4th, 2015 marked the official kick-off for May Mental Health Awareness Month! This year’s 3rd Annual Stand Up for Mental Wellness! event featured new activities involving art and media. Over 90 community members, including consumers of mental health services and their families, providers and community residents traveled from across the county to attend the event hosted by BHRS’ Diversity and Equity Council. Attendees had the opportunity to participate in community artwork and poetry, listen to powerful stories of hope and recovery; and, pledge to “Be The One” (San Mateo County’s local anti-stigma campaign) by taking a photo with a personalized pledge poster. Among the evenings presentations, was a screening of digital stories created by graduates of the Lived Experience Academy followed by a panel discussion that highlighted the importance of sharing personal stories in reducing stigma associated with behavioral health issues and inspiring those in need to seek help.

The Lived Experience Academy will conduct two additional panels during the month of May in South San Francisco and Half Moon Bay. Panels are open to the public. For more details about these panels and other May events, visit

To view photos from Monday’s “Be The One” photobooth or to upload your own Be The One pledge, visit