As many of you know, ETD (Erasing the Distance) performances disarm stigma, spark dialogue, educate, and promote healing surrounding issues of mental health. This year, ETD will present a show on depression and families to address one of the most common forms of mental illness. Here are a few facts:
(*) According to the National Institute of Mental health, clinical depression is one of the most common mental illnesses, affecting more than 19 million Americans each year.
(*) Depression causes people to lose pleasure from daily life, can complicate other medical conditions, and can even be serious enough to lead to suicide.
(*) Depression can occur to anyone, at any age, and to people of any race or ethnic group. Depression is never a "normal" part of life, no matter what your age, gender or health situation.
(*) About 70% of individuals with depression have a full remission of the disorder with effective treatment, but fewer than half of those suffering from this illness seek treatment. Unfortunately, too many people resist treatment because they believe depression isn't serious, that they can treat it themselves or that it is a personal weakness rather than a serious medical illness.
We need more awareness about these issues. How many of us have been affected by depression? How do we as individuals and as families affected by depression cope? How do we find support and move forward? How do we find hope when there only appears to be darkness?
Maybe you know a friend or family member, or even a co-worker, that has been depressed. Perhaps, you yourself have had a bout with depression.
By donating to this campaign, you help us bring this illness and the journey of families dealing with this illness to life through theater. Help us use the arts to open up dialogue, to generate awareness and ignite healing. I hope you will support in any way you can. THANK YOU!!
- Parren James, ETD Board
We all have a story. Maybe you grew up in a home with a depressed parent. Or you are struggling to support your partner through his or her depressive episodes. Or you have absolutely no idea how to reach out for help yourself when you feel your world closing in on you.
Help us weave such very personal stories into dialogue. Awareness. Compassion.
ETD’s focus this year is Depression in Families. How do we cope when our family is affected by depression? How do we recognize when a loved one is suffering? How can we support one another when we don’t even have the words to express our own anger and pain?
ETD’s Mental Health Advisory Board invites you to join our mission to shed light on mental health issues through theater. You can help inspire healing by supporting the Depression in Families project. Please give as generously as you can.
- Caren Friedman, Mental Health Advisory Board