On Tuesday, the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) announced a new mental health initiative OK2Talk at an event in Washington DC. The campaign encourages teens and young adults to share personal stories of recovery, tragedy, struggle or hope in a supportive and safe, moderated space at OK2Talk.org. In addition, a series of TV and radio public service announcements will run nationwide encouraging open communication about mental health in school, the workplace, in families and among friends.
In 2003, NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith’s 22-year-old son Garrett took his own life after a long struggle with depression. A former senator from Oregon, Gordon and his wife Sharon, hope that encouraging conversation about mental illness helps other families from meeting the same fate. They believe that had they known the signs, and sought help and treatment for Garrett earlier, their son would still be alive today. Gordon and Sharon hope that by sharing Garrett’s story they can help bring this issue out of the shadows and into the light through open and honest conversation.
I completely agree. Openly talking about mental health is a first step in eliminating stigma, removing shame and getting help to those who need it. So I wanted to share the above info with you. Please pass it on.
And here’s one of the several PSAs that will be running in the OK2Talk Campaign:
Many thanks to the NAB for spearheading this important initiative. If you’d like to submit your story to the OK2Talk Campaign, you may do so here: http://ok2talk.org/submit