Skip to main content

Verified by Psychology Today

October 10th is World Mental Health Day

How to take part in this international awareness campaign.

Key points

  • The World Health Organization reports nearly 1 billion people live with a mental health disorder.
  • In countries with low income and poverty, more than 75% of people with mental illnesses will not receive treatment.
  • World Mental Health Day can be a life-saving and life-changing opportunity to highlight the lack of mental health support around the world.
Picmonkey
Source: Picmonkey

Since 1992, World Mental Health Day is an awareness campaign celebrated in more than 150 countries worldwide to advocate, educate and bring awareness about mental illness. It was created by Richard Hunt, a lawyer, mental health advocate, and Deputy Secretary General of the World Federation for Mental Health.

Hunt decided on October 10 as the annual observance day and developed the concept of an annual theme to highlight globally. The 2021 theme is "Mental health care for all: Let's make it a reality" - and focuses on highlighting the fact that mental health care access remains unequal across the world.

Mental Health Statistics

5 Ways to Embrace World Mental Health Day

The World Health Organization reports that only about 2% of a country's budget goes to mental health funding. This is why World Mental Health Day can be a life-saving and life-changing opportunity to highlight the lack of mental health support around the world. Consider the following to get the message out that mental health care is a necessary part of life to all of us.

  1. Reach out to a loved one. Check in with a friend or family member who lives with a mental illness. Talking, touching base, emailing, texting or calling to just shooting the breeze can be so supportive and helpful.
  2. Get social. Share World Mental Health Day on your social media. Link a post, hashtag #WMDH21, share a story or follow a mental health organization.
  3. Educate yourself. Spend the day reading an article about mental illness. Read a post from a mental illness advocate. Watch an award-winning movie about a mental illness with others and talk about your experiences with it.
  4. Participate. Take part in a local or online mental health event. Consider donating to a mental health charity or volunteering at a local community resource center.
  5. Take your own mental health day. Make self-care a priority and take a mental health day, yourself, from work or school. Or give yourself the day off from chores or other home pressures.

advertisement