MHC partners with National Mental Health Awareness Campaign IDONTMIND to offer Write On! Worldwide

Mental Health America’s IDONTMIND campaign and Mental Health Connecticut (MHC) have joined forces to offer MHC’s Write On! program across the U.S. and beyond through a free nine-week virtual writing workshop.

The nine-week virtual writing workshop is based on the idea that writing and community support can be powerful tools in the self-discovery journey. Modeled after MHC’s Write On! program for young adults, the IDONTMIND Writing Workshop will be the first time this program is offered to a national audience.

Created in 2017, IDONTMIND is a mental health awareness campaign working to defeat the stigma around mental illness. Their goal is to inspire open and honest conversations about mental health and help people understand their minds in new ways. Write On! has been shown as an effective intervention in defeating self-stigma, a key factor in mental health outcomes.

“IDONTMIND has been incredibly successful in raising awareness and generating support for mental wellness, especially for young adults. We are excited to partner with MHA and the IDONTMIND team to help broaden the success we’ve had in Connecticut with Write On! and to bring the healing power of writing and storytelling to more people, across the country and across the world,” said Mental Health Connecticut President and CEO, Luis B. Pérez.

Created by Janet Reynolds, a writer, publisher, teacher, and mental health advocate, this workshop focuses on young adults (18-29) who want to find their voice and share their truth. Participants will leave the workshop with advanced writing and storytelling skills, new ways to cope during times of emotional distress, and the confidence to share their story in a way that demystifies mental illness and ends stigma in the community.

“One of the most powerful ways to become a mental health advocate is to share your story with the world. But we know that can be a little scary. IDONTMIND is proud to offer this free workshop to young adults who are ready to take this step – and give them confidence and support along the way,” said IDONTMIND Co-founder Edward Schmit. “IDONTMIND’s mission is to inspire open and honest conversations about mental health, and this workshop is a perfect way to do that.”

A pilot study of Write On! conducted by the University of Hartford’s Center for Social Research, suggested that participants in the program were able to better manage their emotions, were more willing to seek support and receive feedback when they needed it, and overall were more confident and comfortable with themselves. “Interventions targeting self-stigmatizing beliefs can potentially break the chain of negative events. The Write On! workshop, hosted by Mental Health Connecticut, is one such intervention,” the report notes. You can read the report in its entirety here.

Applications for the IDONTMIND Writing Workshop are now open and can be found here. A total of 25 applicants will be selected to participate in the workshop that begins in mid-September. The workshop is offered free of charge with funding and support from retail leader Macy’s, as well as MHA and MHC.