What is The IWishYouKnew - Chalkboard Campaign?
The Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services has launched a new campaign, “I wish you knew…” that aims to raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of mental disorders in young adults and to connect them with available services and support regardless of their ability to pay. The campaign is a part of the department’s initiative, “Oklahoma Now is the Time” (ONIT). Oklahoma is one of only 17 states awarded with a “Now Is the Time,” five-year grant through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
We want to spark a community conversation.
When thinking about serious mental disorders, it’s easy for many to dismiss our young people. Thinking ‘that’s not our kids,’ but in fact, we have the data that shows it is our kids who are struggling. In the three counties we’re targeting (Oklahoma, Okmulgee, Washington), suicide is the second leading cause of death for young adults ages 16 - 25. We’ve got to start talking about it and letting our young people know that help is available.
This year as part of community outreach project we will be placing “mobile” chalkboards around our community.
These “mobile” chalkboards are approximately 8 feet by 4 feet, we are hoping to place them in highly trafficked areas. The chalkboards are completely interactive, and anonymous.
The Chalkboard poses the following:
Mental Health and Substance abuse issues can affect anyone, but we dont talk about it. Use this space to share a statement about your experience.
The participant will then use the chalk provided to write on the board and fill in the bank, completely anonymous. The result will be a board filled with responses, some funny, some poignant, some even sad.
We want the community to see, that they are not alone. Mental Health isn’t this scary thing. Getting help, asking for help no longer has the stigma it used to.