Louisville festival aims to raise awareness and reduce the stigma of mental health
Mayor Greg Fischer today was joined by Emily Elizabeth, co-founder of MindFEST, Amanda Villaveces, director of Mental Health Lou and a licensed marriage and family therapist, Lauren Muir, of Martin and Muir Counseling, and Lamont Collins, founder and CEO of Roots 101 African American History Museum, to announce Louisville’s first ever MindFEST event that will be held during Mental Health Awareness Month.
“Struggling with issues like depression and anxiety is totally normal, especially after living in a global pandemic for more than two years,” the Mayor said. “Our lives have been altered a great deal and our community is still coping with all the lives lost to COVID-19. MindFEST is a way we can all come together and lean on each other for support.”
"Our community has experienced a collective trauma and we need to work on healing. MindFEST is an amazing opportunity for our community to come together to learn, laugh and connect. All things that support healing for Louisville,” Villaveces said.
MindFEST is a free community mind-strengthening event that will be infused with music, food, entertainment, art, yoga, vendors, panel discussions and more. The goal of the event is to encourage community engagement around mental health topics, connect people with resources and decrease the overall stigma of mental health.
"I truly believe that community connection has the power to heal a community, which is why I wanted to get involved with MindFEST and bring this amazing event to Louisville,” Villaveces said. “We want people to know that mental health is part of everyday life and that there are many resources in our community to help care for our mental health. MindFEST is our team’s way of saying, 'We see you, we got you, you're not alone.'"
MindFEST will be held from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, May 21, 2022, at Roots 101 African American History Museum, located at 124 N. 1st St.
“We had to be involved because it involves people. We are a museum in love with people and we know right now that the mental health issue for all communities is an issue we need to address,” Collins said. “It’s important that we all have the tools to survive everyday life itself.”
To help support the mission of MindFEST, the Louisville Bats is teaming up with the event for the 2022 season to present Mental Health Awareness Night at 6 p.m. on Thursday, May 12 at Slugger Field. A portion of each ticket purchased through Fevo will go to MindFEST.
There is help. If you are thinking of hurting yourself or ending your life, you can text LOU to 741741 or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. For a list of other mental health resources, visit the community mental health services page on louisvilleky.gov.
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MindFEST is a free community event that aims to reduce the stigma of mental health by encouraging community engagement and connecting people with resources. MindFEST was founded by Emily Elizabeth of the Wondering Mind Podcast accompanied by FAIF of FAIF Music entertainment, Amanda Villaveces of Mental Health Lou, Lauren Muir of Martin and Muir Counseling and Randy Woodford of MindFULL brand. They're joined by Jasmine Presley of the Presley Post, Renesha Martin of Martin and Muir Counseling, Shannon Paddymo of GOELS and Molly Flynn.
ABOUT LOUISVILLE METRO DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH & WELLNESS
Louisville Metro Department of Public Health & Wellness (LMPHW) is a nationally accredited, independent, academic health department committed to achieving health equity and improving the health and well-being of all Louisville residents and visitors.