Community Mental Health Awareness Campaign
For my capstone project, I developed and implemented a multi-pronged advocacy and awareness campaign targeting my local community to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health issues and increase support for people struggling with mental illness.
The first part of the campaign involved researching statistics on mental illness rates in my area as well as studying evidence-based best practices for anti-stigma campaigns. I then developed messaging and materials focused on themes of mental health being similar to physical health, stories of recovery being possible, and the importance of community support networks.
Materials created included infographics to share key facts, short videos of local residents discussing their lived experiences, sample social media posts, and draft letters to the editor for the newspaper. I partnered with various local mental health organizations to host community forums to educate residents and start an open dialogue.
I worked with school counselors to deliver classroom presentations onNormalizing mental health discussions and where to find help. posters with campaign messaging and resources were placed around town. Letters were sent to lawmakers, police, clergy, and business leaders urging them to actively support those in need.
An advocacy day at the state capitol was organized bringing residents to meet with legislators. Editorials, social media pushes, and press releases helped generate ongoing local media coverage of the issue. Participating organizations started using the shared materials and message framing going forward.
Months after the initial launch, surveys found increased willingness to support those with mental illness and growing awareness of available resources. Stakeholder interviews revealed the campaign helped reshape community conversations and attitudes. Though ongoing work remains, measurable progress was made in challenging stigma through this multi-pronged advocacy effort.