What is Mental Health?
The World Health Organization defines mental health as “a state of well-being in which the individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.”
Mental health advocacy began with attempts to reduce stigma and promote the rights of people with mental illnesses. It has expanded to include promotion and prevention of mental illness including less severe mental illnesses.
What is an Advocate?
According to Webster’s dictionary, an advocate is a person who speaks or writes in support or defense of a person or cause.
What is a Mental Health Advocate?
A person, who raises awareness, shares information, provides education, trains, helps, suggests, mediates, defends and supports an individual’s well-being as it relates to their overall emotional and psychological condition.
How does Mental Health Advocacy help?
The goal of advocacy is to reduce barriers such as: lack of mental health services, stigma associated with mental disorders, violation of patient’s rights and absence of awareness. If barriers can be reduced, then it will help to improve policies, laws and services. It can help promote the rights of persons with mental illnesses as well as prevent mental illnesses and promote mental health, in general.
Source: World Health Organization
The information on this site is not intended to diagnose or treat any medical or psychological condition. Please consult with your healthcare provider for individual advice regarding your own situation.