terrie williams*New York, NY– Noted PR Executive and Inspirational Author, Terrie M. Williams will be a keynote speaker in commemoration of World Mental Health Day at the UN Church Center on Thursday, October 11, 2012.

The program’s theme, “Depression, Health and Well Being,” will provide a natural platform for Ms. Williams to share personal experiences, and hard won triumphs in confronting and overcoming the challenges of depression. Her most recent critically acclaimed book, Black Pain: It Just Looks Like We’re Not Hurting, has been credited with starting a national dialogue and a renewed mental health advocacy campaign surrounding the issues of depression, and the stigma attached to it. “Mental health all starts with us. We are nothing without our mental and emotional health. And to recognize  some of the symptoms attached to this disease, which is really what it is, we have to begin to listen to the pain in our voices, and provide an outlet where something as simple as listening, really listening to someone, may save a life,” she asserted.

Terrie, one of Woman’s Day magazine “50 Women On A Mission To Change The World” and Ebony magazine’s “Power 150” for Activism, is credited with starting an unprecedented national dialogue about her personal struggle with depression and the impact the stigma of mental illnesses have particularly on the African-American community. This has led to a national mental health advocacy campaign called “Sharing Ourselves…Healing Starts With Us” with a collaboration with the Ad Council’s and SAMHSA’s Campaign of Mental Health Recovery. To date, the campaign has garnered $2.5 million in donated national advertising space and 11 million media impressions to significantly heighten the awareness and importance of mental and emotional health.

Terrie, who has traveled the world engaging audiences and who recently returned from a trip to West Africa will provide a global perspective of mental health and depression, share some commonalities that exist worldwide, while emphasizing the need to have a global coordinated mechanism in place. This timely discussion also comes on the heels of the World Health Assembly’s recent resolution that Mental Disorders have a country by country comprehensive, coordinated response, as well as the United Nations Summit on Non Communicable diseases (NCDs) declaration last year that mental health be recognized as a risk factor for NCDs, as others such as, heart disease, diabetes, cancer, etc.

Introductory remarks will be delivered by Dr. Jacob Kumaresan, Executive Director of the World Health Organization (WHO), and Terrie will be joined by other renowned specialists in the field of mental health from various sectors, including government, academia and civil society.

The program is sponsored by the United Nations NGO Committee on Mental Health, which is affiliated with the Conference of Non-Governmental Organizations (CoNGO) in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations and the World Federation for Mental Health.



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