Sole Focus Project Aims To Raise $500,000 For Local Mental Health Initiatives


A new campaign has been launched aimed at raising money and awareness surrounding mental health illnesses.

The Windsor-Essex County branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association kicked off the "Sole Focus Project" with a goal of raising $500,000 over the next three years.

The money will be used for education and training.

Association CEO Claudia den Boer says this is where the end of the stigma begins.

"We need to stand up when everyone else sits down, we need to stand up when it is easier to turn away, we need to stand up for everyone who can't rise anymore," says den Boer.

It's estimated one in five Canadians are affected by a mental health illness.

The campaign image has already popped up throughout the region with images of teal coloured soles of shoes.

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The goal of the Sole Focus Project is to raise $500,000 for mental health initiatives. February 2017.

Ashley Vodarek has PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) and suffers from depression and anxiety.  She says the first step to better health is to address the stigma because the brain is like every other body part.

"When I'm depressed and can't get out of my house I explain it like this. It is like asking someone with a broken leg if they want to go for a run, a part of you would like to, but I can't," she says.

So far, over $100,000 has been raised in the campaign.