Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare Raises Money For Mental Health

Over 600 people are expected to attend a gala aimed at raising funds for local mental health programs.

The 'Big Night Gala'is set for tonight at 7pm at the Ciociaro Club organized by Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare.

The west-end hospital has 49 specialized mental health beds for adults and also provides supports and services for children through the Regional Children's Centre.

Hotel-Dieu Grace Health Care Vice President of External Affairs Bill Marra says it isn't just about money.

"It is the public awareness that is equally important, you just can't put a dollar value on that. We have raised funds for our specialized mental health programs and this year even our table challenge will be raising money to provide hot lunches for children who are in our intensive treatment services program once a week."

Marra says it affects a lot of people in the community.

"Mental health is incredibly important because the sad reality is that statistically we are hearing that at least 20% of our population or every one in every five persons are affected by it and we believe that number may be higher."

Mental health also extends beyond the patients themselves, he says.

"It has a profound impact on family dynamics, the overall health of a family and it is starting to creep into workplaces and the reality is that it is an illness that affects many people and we need to find ways not only to be proactive about it but provide the proper treatments and intervention at the right time."

AM800's Patty Handysides is MCing the event. The event is sold out.


- With files from Patty Handysides.