The Northeast Wisconsin Mental Health Connection’s Zero Suicide Initiative has launched a new public health campaign aimed at men with the goal of connecting them to mental health services and supports and reducing their suicide risk.
“Working aged men account for the largest number of suicide deaths in our region, as well as nationally,” said Sarah Bassing-Sutton, project coordinator of Project Zero, an adult suicide prevention initiative of The Connection. “They are also the least likely to receive any support, which we need to change.
“The goal of this campaign and companion resources is to reinforce the message to men that it is perfectly ok to ask for and receive help when life gets too hard, stressful or overwhelming.”
The campaign, called Strong Minds 4 Men includes a resource webpage, Ask4helpfoxvalley.org
“We’ve developed this resource to help men – and those who love them – identify risk factors for and signs of mental health issues, learn about mental health concerns, and know when and how to get help,” Bassing-Sutton added.
The resource webpage, Ask4helpfoxvalley.org, which is part of the MyConnectionNew.org website, pulls together information about specific mental health disorders and available services. Visitors to the site will be able to:
• READ about mental health concerns, WATCH videos in which men talk about their experiences, and LISTEN to podcasts that address related topics head-on.
• Find relatable, self-care tools and resources.
• Take a free, online, and anonymous mental health screening.
• Access contact information for emergency services.
• Learn what to expect when contacting a mental health professional.
“Like any other physical illness, depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts, for example, are serious yet very treatable conditions,” said Chris Wardlow, a Zero Suicide Coalition member and man with lived experience. “No one, including men, should suffer in silence and struggle alone. There is help and hope and a variety of great resources in our community.”