My fellow Rotarians and friends of Rotary
Last Sunday, the 31st of
October 2021, we launched our "MIND YOUR HEALTH" campaign in front of an
august audience at the Strathfield Golf Club. I want to summarise the
event's speeches and the presentation explaining "MIND YOUR HEALTH" for the
sake of all those who couldn't make it to the event.
The world is facing a
multifaceted crisis; an unprecedented pandemic health crisis, an economic
crisis, a societal crisis, a racial crisis, an environmental crisis, and
rising geopolitical tensions. However, the main impacts are health-related;
There are 264-300 million individuals worldwide living with depression,
284-300 million living with anxiety-related disorders, 46-60 million living
with bipolar affective disorders, and approximately 16 million living with
"MIND YOUR HEALTH", defined
and developed by the Rotary Club of Strathfield, is a program of many
projects. It is a program and a movement for everyone to understand that
"MIND YOUR HEALTH" is a critical mantra for all of us to realize that life
can be complicated and difficult. The "MIND YOUR HEALTH" concept recognises
the gaps in understanding this topic and our calling to provide tools,
resources, and catalysts for positive change.
Our first project of the "MIND
YOUR HEALTH" program is a social media campaign that encourages people
affected by depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues, caused by
COVID-stress, to seek professional help. We identified that the main problem
is that most people with mental health issues delay recognising the need to
ask for assistance. With our project, hopefully, we can help break down some
of these barriers.
We are initially partnering
and promoting the following three organizations with our campaign:
Relationships Australia NSW
Reconnect Wellbeing Support is
a free 12-month service for older Australians experiencing feelings of
isolation and disconnection due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The restrictions
of the past year left many unable to maintain their usual connections with
family, friends, and community, as well as access health services and
support networks. Reconnect encourages re-engagement through educational,
health-related, social, recreational, or counselling-focused support,
depending on the client's unique situation.
Head to Health
Head to Health has been
designed to help address the significant impact of the ongoing lockdown
restrictions on the mental health of individuals and communities. Our
'Pop-up' clinics provide mental health supports by phone, video, and
in-person from Monday to Friday. Funded by the Australian Government, the
pop-up clinics provide a single-entry point for people living across NSW to
access a range of mental health services.
A comprehensive range of
social and welfare services to the multicultural communities, especially
those of East Asian backgrounds, e.g., Chinese, Koreans, Indonesians,
Vietnamese, Singaporean, Malaysian, etc. Our services include Aged Care
Services, Disability Services, settlement and health services, childcare
services, etc. In addition, we provide emotional support for the Chinese
speaking community, especially those experiencing depression, anxiety,
stress, isolation, loneliness, or burnout because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Rotary International has six
focus areas, two of which are directly related to health. This whole concept
of 'MIND YOUR HEALTH" is an opportunity for Rotary to serve, create
awareness and change lives. An opportunity for Rotary to be the catalyst
between people and professional service providers.
The late Martin Luther King Jr
once said, "Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole
staircase. Just take the first step."
So, the "MIND YOUR HEALTH"
movement will continue and grow - with a program of projects to increase our
impact and expand our reach with synergized partnerships and engagements.
Rotarians will continue to
address Mental Health Issues Head On. This is the first step.
Yours in Rotary,