May is Mental Health Awareness Month which began in 1949 and was started by Mental Health America (MHA). Nearly 1 in 5 American adults will have a diagnosable mental health condition in any given year and 46 percent of Americans will meet the criteria for a diagnosable mental health condition sometime in their life according to MHA. Some studies suggest mental health condition rates among military Veterans may be five to 15 times higher than civilians. Regardless of the numbers, mental health affects everyone. More importantly, we are individual human beings not numbers. I hope to have an opportunity to share the personal side of mental health in future articles.
Right now, I would like to provide you with information and resources available to help yourself or someone else in need. To paraphrase Sir Francis Bacon, Dale Carnegie, Takeda Shingen, or whomever should receive credit, “knowledge is power only when applied”. No time like the present to act.
Northeastern Minnesota mental health and crisis resources
www.letstalkmn.com | call 844-772-4724 | text MN to 741741
988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline
Veterans Crisis Line
Mental Health America
Mental Health First Aid Training
QPR Suicide Prevention Training
May also brings us the observance of Memorial Day on the 29th. The origins of Memorial Day may be traced back to the years following the Civil War. In 1868, Decoration Day was established to decorate the graves of the war dead with flowers. Despite local and state observances, it was not until 1971 that Memorial Day was declared a national holiday by an act of Congress.
I am certain more information will be provided in the coming weeks regarding events in the area. While not a formal event, the Friday before Memorial Day (May 26th this year) will see volunteers in local cemeteries placing flags on Veterans’ graves. Veterans Service Organizations, like American Legion Post 109, provide the flags used to honor and remember our fallen Veterans. Placement of flags will commence at 0800 (8:00 AM) at the Lakeview Cemetery Veterans Section in Two Harbors.
Brad Anderson is the Lake County Veterans Service Officer and can be reached at 218.834.8326, or firstname.lastname@example.org
Karen Christianson is the Cook County Veterans Service Officer and can be reached at 218.387.3639, or karen. email@example.com