Reflecting on Mental Health Awareness Month and this year’s alterations

With the current circumstances of COVID-19, Mental Health Awareness Month has experienced a shift. Advocates have been restricted from events and have been doing small acts that are safe for the present conditions.


**Spreading joy…** Placing hearts around the community, senior Jenna Krauss has made tags for Peyton Hearts that say “May is Mental Health Awareness Month.” The spread of COVID-19 has altered events revolving around Mental Health Awareness Month.

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Although advocates have experienced setbacks due to COVID-19, the spread of awareness has not stopped. The pandemic has caused a spike in mental health issues recently, but resources remain accessible for all.
Souderton resident and mental health advocate Patti Dille has spent the month of May virtually promoting various mental health resources and virtual events.
Last year, Dille along with others planned the event “Positive Pedalers.” Due to the impacts of COVID-19, the event has been shifted to be virtual this year.
The event is scheduled for May 31 and Dille encourages everyone to participate. “Go out, walk, bike ride, run, do whatever you want to do,” Dille said.
According to senior Jenna Krauss, our world’s current state has a positive side because people are spending more time reflecting on their mental health.
“People are paying a lot more attention to it now,” Krauss said. “It can be really difficult to stay positive and stay in a good mental health stance, but it’s getting a lot more attention.”
Other events have had to be cancelled, rescheduled or altered. Sophomore Taylor Burke planned to attend a suicide prevention walk at which her friend, who died by suicide, would be honored.
According to Burke, the cancellation of events should not affect the spread of mental health awareness.
“We should still celebrate and check in with friends because it’s really important,” Burke said.
Dille has promoted several online resources on her Facebook account. Two documentaries that she recommends are “Beneath The Vest” and “A Beautiful Day Tomorrow,” which are both referenced on the NAMI Bucks County website.
Similarly, Burke has occasionally shared mental health related posts on Instagram.
“It’s really important to try and get the word out so people can get help and feel like they are not alone,” Burke said.
Krauss has made tags for Peyton Hearts that say “May is Mental Health Awareness Month!” and has spread them around the community to raise awareness.
“I think the fact that it gets a whole month is really awesome, because it deserves a month,” Krauss said.
According to Dille, more resources are provided on NAMI’s website that are very helpful. “Both Montgomery and Bucks County are doing so many beneficial talks and they are offering many different chats because they want people to find a way to be connected,” Dille said.
Now, more than ever, it is important to recognize and spread awareness for mental health.
“It’s a great time to make people more aware,” Krauss said, “and mental health overall is so important. It has the same importance as physical health.”
According to Dille, due to the hardships that people are currently facing, hotlines are receiving a high amount of calls. “I talked to somebody that is on one of the call lines and she said that last month they had 2,000 calls and that’s a big increase for them,” Dille said.
However, the increase in promotion of these hotlines and other resources is a positive to the situation.
“It’s so important that people know that there is hope and there is help out there,” Dille said.
The CDC and Mental Health America offer valuable resources and information regarding mental health during the Coronavirus pandemic. Visit and for more information.