World Mental Health Day

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The World Health Organisation recognises World Mental Health Day on 10th October every year. “The Day provides an opportunity for all stakeholders working on...

The World Health Organisation recognises World Mental Health Day on 10th October every year.

“The Day provides an opportunity for all stakeholders working on mental health issues to talk about their work, and what more needs to be done to make mental health care a reality for people worldwide”.


World Mental Health Day was observed for the first time on October 10th 1992. It was started as an annual activity of the World Federation for Mental Health by the then Deputy Secretary General Richard Hunter. When the day was first set up it didn’t have a theme each year as it does now, its aims were general ones of promoting mental health advocacy and educating the public on relevant issues. In the first three years one on the main activities to mark the day was a 2-hour global telecast through the US information agency satellite system from studios in Talahassee, Florida.

In 1994, for the first time, it was suggested to have a theme for the day and this was used first time that year.  It was “Improving the Quality of Mental Health Services throughout the World.”  After the campaign feedback was received from 27 countries with notable national campaigns from England and Australia.

In 1995 with assistance from the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) the planning kit material was translated into Spanish enabling distribution into South America. The World Federation for Mental Health later arranged for the translation and printing of the kits into Spanish and French. Many years later the materials have been translated into Spanish, French, Hindi, Russian, Japanese, Chinese and Arabic.

World Mental Health Day Themes

Since 1995, the World Federation for Mental Health has chosen a theme to be promoted in tis planning kit each year. The themes used have been:

  • 1996 Women and Mental Health
  • 1997 Children and Mental Health
  • 1998 Mental Health and Human Rights
  • 1999 Mental Health and Ageing
  • 2000-2001 Mental Health and Work
  • 2002 The Effects of Trauma and Violence on Children & Adolescents
  • 2003 Emotional and Behavioural Disorders of Children & Adolescents
  • 2004 The Relationship Between Physical & Mental Health: co-occurring disorders
  • 2005 Mental and Physical Health Across the Life Span
  • 2006 Building Awareness – Reducing Risk: Mental Illness & Suicide
  • 2007 Mental Health in A Changing World: The Impact of Culture and Diversity
  • 2008 Making Mental Health a Global Priority: Scaling up Services through Citizen Advocacy and Action
  • 2009 Mental Health in Primary Care: Enhancing Treatment and Promoting Mental Health
  • 2010 Mental Health and Chronic Physical Illnesses
  • 2011 The Great Push: Investing in Mental Health
  • 2012 Depression: A Global Crisis
  • 2013 Mental Health and Older Adults
  • 2014 Living with Schizophrenia
  • 2015 Dignity in Mental Health
  • 2016 Psychological and Mental Health First Aid
  • 2017 Mental Health in the Workplace

This year’s theme set by the World Federation for Mental Health is Young people and Mental Heath in a Changing World.

Getting Involved

There are lots of ways you can get involved and participate in World Mental Health Day.  This year we are supporting the Mental Health Foundation’s ‘Tea and Talk’ initiative.

The Mental Health Foundation, who are the UK’s leading mental health research charity run their national campaign Tea and Talk every year. This can take place on or around October 10th.  All you have to do is get together a group of friends, family or colleagues, put the kettle on and invite them to make a donation to the Mental Health Foundation. There are loads of resources available on their website including a fundraising pack to order and recipes for cakes.

Cardinal Clinic and World Mental Health Day

This year we will be supporting the theme by running a free to attend educational workshop for people working in schools. Our Child and Adolescent team will be covering a variety of topics:

  • The Adolescent Brain
  • Attachment and Neuroscience
  • The Role of Parents and Carers in Adolescent Anorexia Nervosa
  • Self-Harm
  • Complex Assessment ASD

The presentations will be delivered by child and adolescent psychiatrists and psychologists and the workshop will conclude with a question and answer session hosted by a multi-disciplinary panel.

N.B. Please note this event is now full but you can register for future educational events by email


1 in 4 people in England need mental health support*

We’re here to ensure you do not have to face it alone.

If you feel like you need professional help, we’re a private mental health hospital in Windsor with nurses on hand 24 hours a day who provide expert clinical treatment.

You can call Cardinal Clinic on 01753 869755 for confidential help and advice or send us an enquiry.

*McManus, S., Meltzer, H., Brugha, T. S., Bebbington, P. E., & Jenkins, R. (2009). Adult psychiatric morbidity in England, 2007: results of a household survey.

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