One of the most critical things impacting the future of mental health is happening right now, but very few people know about the process and how to impact change.
The United Nations is currently in draft of the Post 2015 Millennium Development Goals, a road map for a future of global prosperity, equity, freedom, dignity and peace. While it may be a world document, it is so important to realize this is a local, regional, national, and international call to action as it impacts the very fiber of our future.
Yet, unfortunately and for all those that work in the field of mental health probably not surprisingly, mental health is totally absent from the entire current document.
Now, my ADHD has taken me around the world, and one of my biggest challenges has always been focus (why I haven’t been writing much lately, and I am sorry). There are a million things grabbing my attention, and getting the balance right of my brain self-care with meditation, workouts, healthy eating, friends, family, writing, and work is one massive juggling act so the last thing I needed at my most recent event in Geneva Switzerland was another project. I’ve got a for profit I run along with a nonprofit, and they all have competing priorities and I’m not even meeting all of those but when I heard the mission I couldn’t refuse as I believe the stakes are simply too high.
I joined #FundaMentalSDG, because I believe it has an impact beyond anything we can imagine or understand today for mental health. Year after year, our brains and the work we collectively do in mental health get put on the backburner for more pressing, immediate issues, diseases, and problems. To me, getting language addressing the brain, the critical need for healthy minds, and our global right and need to take care of the most complex and game-changing organ in our body in a road map for our future has a historic, symbolic and global message that needs to be prioritized by all individuals and groups working in the field of mental health. We simply all must find time (and from you it’s only 10-20 minutes).
So I hope individuals, organizations, companies and people that care about our genius instruments we call the brain take the 10 to 20 minutes to really think about this issue and act via steps outline below. Our brain health impacts everything, absolutely everything we create and do in this world. And I don’t see a more important way we can collectively say it is time to stop ignoring the health of our minds, and join together to make mental health one of our top objectives to improve in the years to come than by at least having it mentioned in one of the most important documents our world is creating; the 2015 Post Millennium Development Goals.
FundaMentalSDG worked hard to make it as easy as possible for all of you and/or your organization to participate.
What can you do? We have already drafted specific language for the goals you can find on the website. Time is limited and the windows of opportunity are closing. The requests for change are simple and straightforward and include an ask for you to:
- Send a letter on your organization’s letterhead to your United Nations representative in support of this initiative. We even have a template and list of country contacts. We are focused on the United States, Ireland, and Kenya, as they are three key players in the UN negotiations. You can find the template here.
- Have your name personally or your organization’s logo put on the FundaMentalSDG website in support of this effort. Our list of supporters grows by the day, and we need yours.
- Like the Facebook page, share with friends and family at Facebook.
- Tweet. Encourage others to tweet. Retweet: We must include mental health in United Nations Post Millennium Development Goals. There is no #health without #mentalhealth @FundamentalSDG @UN #FundaMentalSDG
- Take the Post Millennium Development Goal survey, and under “other” ask them to add mental health to the overall health goals, via FundamentalSDG recommendations.
I received a powerful letter years ago from Alan Ezagui, while he was Director of the Potomac Ridge Behavioral Health Foundation, commending iFred on our work and then going on to provide a very prolific quote, one that I think is quite relevant to this very task. It is from an event Alan attended with the esteemed Congressman Patrick Kennedy where Mr. Kennedy said:
“Until a cause becomes a (social) movement, authentic, even transformational change, will not occur. The 60s gave us the Civil Rights Movement, the 90s the Aids Movement. Then, he challenged us to make Mental Health the 21st Century Movement.”
I ask you to please join us, and ask all mental health or related organizations you know join us, at FundaMentalSDG in creating a global movement for mental health. Share this article with your friends and family, as you never know who might be able to help. I truly think it could be the single most important thing we do this year for mental health, impacting us all in ways we never imagined for centuries to come.
Thank you, from the bottom of my heart and depth of my mind, for supporting this important global call to action.