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Gun Run 2015 Media Stories

CPMH Staff Raises Awareness at the Gun Run 2015

Proceeds to support students in public mental health

On 11 October, 23 participants took part in this year’s Gun Run to raise funds to be used in training a South African student in public mental health. The Alan J Flisher Centre for Public Mental Health’s director, Prof. Crick Lund, joined other staff members Erica Breuster, Marguerite Schneider and Claire van der Westhuizen at this year’s event. Dr Max Price, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cape Town, Prof. Bronwyn Myers of the Medical Research Council; and Prof. Danie Visser, Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research at UCT, also took part on behalf of CPMH.

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Dr Price says: “Mental health is tragically overlooked in the medical care of poorer communities, yet it has a far-reaching effect on any nation – its economy, job growth and performance, education, social well-being, family and community life. South Africans need to know that mental health problems can affect all kinds of people, in all walks of life and of all ages. It’s also a fascinating and important field of study, which is steadily advancing in terms of research and treatment.”

“Dignity in mental health” is the 2015 theme of World Mental Health Day, which is observed annually on 10 October. During the month of October various events will be held in the Western Cape to raise awareness for mental health care. Visit for more details and use the hashtag #DignityInMind to pledge your support.

Media Stories

Keep #DignityInMind this World Mental Health Month

Mental health care organizations work together to raise awareness.

October is World Mental Health Month and on the 10th we commemorate World Mental Health Day. This year a group of local organizations within the mental health care sphere teamed up to amplify their efforts to raise awareness.

Together they’re working towards removing the stigma related to mental illness and to bring about dignity in mental health. This is also the theme set by the World Health Organization for this year’s efforts.

“Mental health legislation can have a decisive role to play in fostering conditions for the provision of quality mental health care, reducing stigma, discrimination and marginalisation and ending institutionalisation. Furthermore, the participation of people with psychosocial disabilities in the drafting process is critical to ensuring that their dignity is respected and that their human rights are effectively protected and fulfilled,” says Michelle Funk from the WHO’s department of mental health and substance abuse.

In addition to the strong case made by Funk, there’s also a strong economic argument for preventing mental illness and scaling up mental health care. South Africans suffering from mental illness together lose a total of R30 billion in earnings, whilst government spending on mental health care amounts to only R500 million. (Click here to view source.)

We hope that by working together our call for action will be heard.

During the month of October a number of events will be held in support of mental health care in South Africa.

Visit to view a calendar of events as well as some useful information on mental health care in South Africa.

You can show your support of this initiative by attending any of the exciting events and by sharing the hashtag #DignityInMind on social media.

For any media queries or to schedule an interview with any of our knowledgeable researchers and mental health care professionals, contact media[at]

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