THE stigma associated with people suffering from mental illness is always a concern for organisations that work with mental illness survivors and those still undergoing treatment.
With World Mental Health Day celebrated globally on October 10, the College of Medicine, through its dean, Professor Ian Rouse, on Saturday gave 150 T-shirts bearing messages that will help psychiatric survivors promote the elimination of mental health stigmatisation.
The National Youth Champs for Mental Health and the Community Recovery Outreach Program will stage the one-day celebration to highlight issues that surround the topic of mental illness and how people suffering from it can be assisted.
"The stigma associated with mental illness is because of the lack of understanding of mental health," National Youth Champs official Lionel Rogers said.
"It is a norm that people have adopted for years. There is lack of understanding and awareness and also there is a lack of advocacy because there is no funding for such projects and for people working around the areas of mental health."
Mr Rogers said there was a need for young people to understand what mental health was and how those who suffer or have suffered could be helped.
'There is a need for young people to understand mental health because they cover majority of the country's population," he said.
The fun day will be held at Sukuna Park in Suva.