World Federation for Mental Health
World Federation for Mental Health

World Mental Health Day Reports from Around the World!

Below you will find the reports of the activites for the 2017 WMHD Campaign to celebrate Mental Health and the Workplace. 


I am pleased to update you that we hosted the Silver Ribbon Workplace Emotional Health and Wellness Summit yesterday and invited the Speaker of the Parliament to present commendation plaque to 32 employers who pledged to

  • promote mental wellness at their workplace,
  • offer equal job opportunities to people with mental health issues,
  • equip their management staff with knowledge and skills to support their employee, and
  • provide support to their at-risk employees


Enclosed herewith

  1. 1st photo indicating collaborative effort in mental health promotion & advocacy
    • our Speaker of the Parliament,
    • representatives from government agencies, mental health organisations, etc,
    • 32 employers,
    • lecturers and students.


  1. 2nd photo – President and HR representative of the Singapore Table Tennis Association received commendation plaque from Mr Tan Chuan Jin, the Speaker of the Parliament.


  1. a report on this summit in our local paper. -


Thank you and take care.


Porsche Poh

Executive Director, Silver Ribbon (Singapore)

Corporate Secretary, World Federation for Mental Health

+65 63861928


Geneva WMHD    9-10 October 2017

By Yoram Cohen

      Dr. Shekhar Saxena, Director of the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse of the WHO (World Health Organization) in Geneva Switzerland, invited me as Board Member of the WFMH (World Federation for Mental Health) to take part at the MH GAP Forum 2017 which was held on 9-10 October 2017. This year's forum coincided with WHO celebration of WMHD - World Mental Health Day and dealt with the implementation of WHO's Mental Health Action Plan.

       The WHO recognizes the initiative of WFMH to commemorate the WMHD on 10 October every year. The WFMH founded the awareness day 25 years ago, in 1992. The day provides an opportunity for all stakeholders working on MH (mental health) issues in the world to talk about their work, and what more needs to be done to make MH care a reality for people worldwide. People all over the world are holding events, making announcements and celebrating the day. This year's theme, which was set by the WFMH, is: "Mental Health in the Workplace".

      The 2 days forum provided an opportunity for a diverse group of stakeholders to discuss a variety of themes on the implementation of the WHO's mental health action plan 2013-2020 and related topics. The objectives were:


To strengthen effective leadership and governance for MH

To provide comprehensive, integrated and responsive MH and social care services in community-based settings.

To implement strategies for promotion and prevention in MH

To strengthen information systems, evidence and research for MH.


        Highlights in this year's program, with the theme of "Mental Health Capacity building within countries", included:  Launch of Mobile App which will make it much easier for care providers to access the plan, Operations Manual to assist program managers to plan, Training Package, MH in the workplace, a review of outcomes of the year-long campaign on Depression – Let's Talk, MH campaigns – where do we go from here? And group discussions.

      The topics of the group discussions were: Workforce development in psychological intervention delivery, Public health response to dementia, Human rights in MH, Community engagement in suicide prevention, Self-help interventions, helping adolescents thrive, helping people with severe mental disorders live longer and healthier lives and MH GAP implementation.

      The MH Action Plan 2013-2020 was adapted by WHO Members States in May 2013 which aims to strengthening the response from health and social sectors in countries:

      Challenge – The global burden of mental disorders is large and continues to grow. Health systems throughout the world are struggling to respond adequately to the needs of people with MH problems:

1 in 4 people are affected by a mental disorder at some point in their lives.


By 2030 depression will be the leading cause of disease burden globally.    


900,000 persons commit suicide each year. Suicide is the second most common cause of death among young people.

3 out of 4 with severe mental disorders receive no treatment.

People with MH disorders are exposed to a wide range of human rights violations.


       Vision – A world in which MH is valued, promoted, and protected, mental disorders are prevented and persons affected by these disorders are able to exercise the full range of human rights and to access high-quality, culturally appropriate health and social care in a timely way to promote recovery, all in order to attain the highest possible level of health and participate fully in society and at work free from stigmatization and discrimination.

Cross-cutting Principles – Universal health coverage, Human rights and Evidence-based practice.

Objectives and Targets –

To strengthen effective leadership and governance for MH

To provide comprehensive, integrated and responsive MH and social care services in community0based settings.

      GOAL – To promote mental well-being, prevent mental disorders, provide care, enhance recovery, promote human rights and reduce the mortality, morbidity and disability for persons with mental disorders.

       The 2 days MH GAP Forum which was held in the central hall of the WHO Geneva was chaired by Dr. Shekahar Saxena, Director of the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse of the WHO, with the participation of hundreds of representatives from 34 Member States, 6 United Nations Agencies: UNESCO, UNHCR, UNICEF, UNITAR, UNIRISD and UNRWA, 113 organizations, 13 WHO Collaborating Centers, observers and WHO Secretariat.


UN Recognizes World Mental Health Day

**Mental Health Day

Today is also World Mental Health Day, which seeks to raise awareness of mental health issues around the world and mobilize efforts in support of mental health.  This year, the Day is focusing on mental health in the workplace.  According to the World Health Organization, a negative working environment may lead to physical and mental health problems, harmful use of substances, absenteeism and lost productivity.  However, employers and managers who put in place initiatives to promote mental health and to support employees who have mental disorders see gains not only in the health of their employees but also in their productivity at work.  More information online.

submitted by WFMH UN Rep - Nancy Wallace