There has always been a stigma surrounding mental health. Those suffering from mental health issues are afraid to speak up and many people don't really want to listen; because it's "uncomfortable". In reality, mental health is a bigger conversation and we need to be willing to take part in. Although there has always been a stigma about Mental Health issues, there have been great strides in Western Communities in opening up the conversation.  Bell, the Canadian media giant, even has an annual mental health campaign called Bell Let's Talk, which gives Canadians the chance to open up about mental health; working to erase the stigma surrounding mental health and is committed to raising money for the cause.   Meanwhile, in the South Asian community, mental health is one of those unspoken topics. Depression, bipolar disorder and anxiety are viewed as signs of weakness in character with a major stigma of shame. The issue was studied in 2010 by Time to Change, a national campaign aimed at ending stigma and discrimination surrounding mental health which found South Asians with mental health issues had a distinct experience compared to members of other communities. This silence and lack of understanding are particularly dangerous to both the individual and potentially to those around them. South Asian immigrants and first-generation Canadians face unique struggles and factors that can take a toll on their mental health; racism, loneliness and lack of being part of a community. The conversation about mental health needs to progress to being intersectional and inclusive of these unique experiences.  
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Fortunately Millennial and Generation Z  South Asians see the importance of these things and are taking it upon themselves to educate their community and open up a conversation about mental health. South Asian Canadian Youtube sensation Lily Singh went so far as to open up to the world about her own experience with Depression and how important it is to work to remove the stigma surrounding mental health. Deepika Pudukone similarily has spoken out regarding the stigma and lack of empathy surrounding mental health issues in India. In the wake of tragedies like the July 2018 Danforth Shooting, we need to work together to build a more understanding community. Let's not be afraid to talk about it and be more open to listening. If you feel you are struggling with your mental health or know someone who is, below are some resources you can take advantage of. Resources National Crisis Hotlines Kids Help Phone 1-800-668-6868 Crisis Services Canada 1-833-456-4566, or text 45645 Centre for Suicide Prevention 1-833-456-4566 Canada Drug Rehab Addiction Services Directory 1-866-462-6362 National Eating Disorder Information Centre 1-866-633-4220 National resources for information about mental illness Bell Let's Talk Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention(not a crisis line) 204-784-4073 Canadian Mental Health Association 416-646-5557 Canadian Psychological Association 1-888-472-0657 Mood Disorders Society of Canada 613-921-5565 Schizophrenia Society of Canada 1-800-263-5545 Mental Health Commission 613-683-3755   British Columbia Crisis Hotlines Crisis Centre 1-800-784-2433 No area code needed: 310-6789   British Columbia Resources Canadian Mental Health Association - British Columbia Division 1-800-555-8222 Counselling B.C. 1-800-661-2121 Youth in B.C. online chat Greater Vancouver Area: 604-872-3311 Howe Sunshine & Sunshine Coast: 1-866-661-3311 Aboriginal Wellness Program 604-875-6601 B.C. Psychological Association referral service 1-800-730-0522 B.C. Problem Gambling Help Line 1-888-795-6111   Alberta Crisis Hotlines Distress Centre 403-266-4357   Alberta Resources Canadian Mental Health Association - Alberta Division 780-482-6576 Suicide Information and Education Services 403-342-4966 Psychologists Association of Alberta Referral Service 1-888-424-0297   Saskatchewan Crisis Hotlines Saskatoon Crisis Intervention Service 306-933-6200 Mobile Crisis Services 306-757-0127   Saskatchewan Resources Canadian Mental Health Association - Saskatchewan Division 1-800-461-5483 Psychology Association of Saskatchewan   Manitoba Crisis Hotlines Manitoba Suicide Prevention Line “Reason to Live” 1-877-435-7170 Manitoba Crisis Line 1-888-322-3019 Manitoba Sexual Assault Crisis Line 1-888-292-7565   Manitoba Resources Canadian Mental Health Association - Manitoba Division 204-982-6100 Klinic Community Health 204-784-4090 Mental Health Education Resource Centre of Manitoba 1-855-942-6568 Manitoba Psychological Society-Find a Psychologist 204-488-7398

Yukon Crisis Hotlines Yukon Crisis Line 403 668-9111   Yukon Resources Yukon Health and Social Services 1-800-667-8346 Mood Disorders Society of Canada - Yukon Division 1-867-667-8346 Depression Understood 403-668-9111   Northwest Territories Crisis Hotlines Northwest Territories Help Line 1-867-767-9061   Northwest Territories Resources CASP - Northwest Territories Crisis Centre 1-800-661-0844   Nunavut Crisis Hotlines Nunavut Kamatsiaqtut Help Line 1-800-265-3333   Ontario Crisis Hotlines Ontario Mental Health Helpline 1-866-531-2600 Good2Talk Gerstein Crisis Centre 416-929-5200 Crisis Line In Ottawa: 613-722-6914 In the larger Ottawa area: 1-866-996-0991 ONTX Ontario Online & Text Crisis Service District and Crisis Ontario helplines 416-486-2242   Ontario Resources Ontario Psychological Association416- 961-5552 Canadian Mental Health Association - Ontario Division 416-977-5580 Family Association for Mental Health Everything (FAME) 416-207-5032 Ontario Association for Suicide Prevention 647-525-6277 Ontario Victim Support Line  1-888-579-2888 Ontario 211 database of Ontario's community and social services 1-877-330-3213 Connex Ontario Health Services 1-866-531-2600 Drug and Alcohol Helpline 1-800-565-8603 Toronto Distress Centre 416-408-4357 Toronto Rape Crisis Centre 416-597-8808   Quebec Crisis Hotlines Centre de Prevention du Suicide de Quebec 1-866-277-3553   Quebec Resources Action on Mental Illness 1-877-303-0264 Centre de Prevention du Suicide du Haut-Richelieu 450-348-6300 Movement Sante Mentale Quebec 514-849-3291   Newfoundland and Labrador Crisis Hotlines Coalition Against Violence 1-888-737-4668 Mobile Crisis Response Team 1-888-737-4668   Newfoundland and Labrador Resources Canadian Mental Health Association - Newfoundland and Labrador Division 1-877-753-8550 Mental Health and Addictions Services triage line Association of Psychology in Newfoundland and Labrador referrals New Brunswick Crisis Hotlines Chimo Helpline 1-800-667-5005   New Brunswick Resources Canadian Mental Health Association - New Brunswick Division 506-455-5231 College of Psychologists of N.B. - Find a psychologist   Prince Edward Island Crisis Hotlines The Island Helpline 1-800-218-2885 Prince Edward Island Resources Canadian Mental Health Association - Prince Edward Island Division 902-566-3034 Psychological Association of Prince Edward Island   Nova Scotia Crisis Hotlines Capital Health - Mental Health Mobile Crisis 1-888-429-8167   Nova Scotia Resources Canadian Mental Health Association - Nova Scotia Division 1-888-429-8167 Association of Psychologists of Nova Scotia - Find a psychologist 902-422-9183