The local branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association and the Weyburn Police Service have teamed up this year for National Mental Health Week, which runs next week, May 2nd to May 8th.

Their first initiative has been to ensure Weyburn residents have easy access to resources for mental health support, by distributing door hangers to everyone directly to their mailboxes.

"On the back [of the door-hangers], there are some local resources as well as some national resources," noted Tasha Collins, Program Director with CMHA Weyburn. "The whole point of the door hangers is to get those resources into everybody's homes, as well as raising awareness for mental health."

"Right now we have the mental health awareness solution initiative that we're asking everybody to participate in, by putting those door hangers up on their door."

As for events next week, they'll be hosting the Mayor's Luncheon on Tuesday, May 3rd with guest speaker Lauren Cole, and a performance by a local vocal ensemble. 

"And then we have our used book sale on May 4th and 5th, and that will be in front of Blue Earth Environmental [on Third Street]."

Collins said there are some things we can do, and things we can watch for in order to protecting and promoting our own individual mental health.

"Things like not being able to move forward in your day, if something's holding you back, if something like that is happening for you, and it kind of stops you in your place, and you're not able to move forward in your day, that could be a one sign that you've got some anxiety over something or some stress related to something, and so that might be an opportunity to reach out and talk to somebody about what's going on and what's preventing you from moving forward," she shared. 

Connection, she said, was the whole point of this initiative.

"We wanted to connect people to our community, to our neighbors, to our resources, and to mental health in general. So that was kind of the biggest part of the resource," noted Collins. "And the door hanger, [Constable] Melinda Mintenko came to me with this idea, saying that she had been on certain calls, and people didn't know who to reach out to for help."

"She said, 'I want to find a way to get those resources to everybody!' and so that's how we developed this whole initiative. We're really looking forward to  people having the resources as well as showing that they support mental health, or even that they just recognize that mental health as a thing."

Collins said mental health is actually a part of health in general.

"If I'm honest, we're not the only ones in this boat, but like the last two years have had a significant effect on many people's mental health, and health in general. I certainly feel like connections, and having a sense of belonging, a connection to the community, and the purpose in our day, those types of things help us protect and maintain our mental health. So, reaching out for those connections, and finding a way to be involved, can certainly be part of that self care that we put in place for our taking a proactive approach. and trying to prevent the crisis by seeking support and not struggling in silence. That's really what we want to do."