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Mental Health Awareness Month Is In Full Swing With Films, Panel Discussions And An Art Show

Summit County

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Connect Summit County has events scheduled through the end of the month to address things like grief and loss, suicide, emotional awareness, resiliency and happiness.

Tuesday, the film the S-Word is playing at 6:30 at the Jim Santy auditorium. Film producer Lisa Kline experienced two losses to suicide while she was in high school. She’ll be there to talk about her work to address suicide.

Connect Summit County Acting Director Sherri Fisher says so far, the month has been very successful and by the end of May, they’ll have done 12 events including five film screenings.

“But then we also try to put together panels that create dialogue around the different topics of those films. And on those panels, we try to have providers, a psychotherapist, a psychiatrist, a counselor, somebody who is working with many people who are facing these issues.  Also, people with lived experience to really try to personalize it.  And give the audience a chance to ask questions.”

There are four more films scheduled through May with panel discussions to follow.
Thursday is a film on grief and loss.

“Voices of Grief is a film by Kathy Sparnan. She’s also going to be here so we will have that same introduction from her. And, it talks about the different ways that people work through grief and loss. It’s something that we all have and will go through and so it’s how can we be on that journey? What do we learn on that journey? And, how can we companion others who are on that journey?”

The animated family film Inside Out is playing on Sunday and Fisher notes it could be a great way to start a conversation about emotions.

“And, it is for fun. It’s to help children and adults learn about emotions. It’s something that, we as humans, have emotions and I don’t think we’re ever really taught how to deal with those emotions and so you’ll follow Riley through the ins and outs of her life and how she experiences her emotions as she goes through that.”

They’re ending May Mental Health Awareness month with a documentary film called Happy. It will screen on Wednesday, the 22nd also at the Santy auditorium.

Connect is looking for submissions to the Images of Resilience Art Show. Psychiatrist Scott Langenecker will talk about the science behind creating art as a coping mechanism for mental health issues as well as how it can help create wellness.

“We have a call for art out for people to turn in digital images of artwork that they have either created as a coping mechanism or something, that for them resembles or is the epitome of what resiliency is.”

Utah artists will also show their work at the Images of Resilience Art Show and both adults and kids will have a chance to participate in an art project.

All the films and events are free. Connect Calendar of Events has more information on dates and times.   https://connectsummitcounty.org/calendar-events-2/

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