Happy african american couple hugging on the street in a summer day

Together We Care. Together We Share: Mental Illness Awareness Week

In a world that often prioritizes physical health, it’s crucial to remember that mental health is equally important. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), 1 in 5 Americans face the reality of living with a mental health condition each year.

This year’s Mental Illness Awareness Week (October 1─7) theme is “Together We Care. Together We Share” and it speaks to the importance of coming together as a community to combat the mental health crisis.

The Purpose of Mental Illness Awareness Week is to:

Break the Stigma One of the primary goals is to break down the stigma associated with mental health conditions. By educating the public and encouraging open conversations, we can help people realize that mental illnesses are not a sign of weakness but rather a medical condition that requires treatment and support.

Promote Understanding: Awareness weeks like this provide an opportunity for individuals to learn more about mental health issues. When people understand what someone with a mental illness might be experiencing, they are more likely to offer empathy, support and assistance.

Encourage Help-Seeking Behavior Many people who suffer from mental health conditions hesitate to seek help due to fear, shame or misunderstanding. Mental Illness Awareness Week aims to encourage those in need to reach out for support and treatment. Early intervention can lead to more effective management of mental health issues.

Advocate for Policy Change This week also serves as a platform for advocates and organizations to push for changes in policies and regulations surrounding mental health. This includes improved access to mental health services and increased funding for mental health research.

Mental Illness Awareness Week serves as a reminder that mental health is a vital component to whole-person health. By erasing stigma, promoting understanding and advocating for change, we can create a world where everyone feels comfortable seeking help. So, let’s come together to support one another and work toward a future where mental health is treated with the same importance as physical health. Together, we can make a difference.

If you or someone you know is struggling, SAMHSA’s National Helpline is a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-day-a-year treatment referral and information service (in English and Spanish) for individuals and families facing mental and/or substance use disorders.

Call or text 988 to reach the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline for 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress, and prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones.

Additional Resources

NAMI HelpLine: Find mental health resources in your area.

FindTreatment.gov: Find treatment for mental health and/or substance use disorders.

SAMHSA Resource Directory


Navis Clinical Laboratories offers comprehensive mental health adherence testing to help clinicians identify patient medication non-adherence and high-risk behavior that could have dangerous or deadly outcomes. Learn more about our mental health testing solutions.

Share this post

Sign up for our Newsletter