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Healthy Minds, Healthy Lives
October 2012

2012 World Mental Health Day logo  

Happy World Mental Health Day!


This year, I invite you to join ASHA International, and the World Health Organization in celebrating World Mental Health Day to raise public awareness about mental health issues. The day promotes open discussion of mental disorders, and investments in prevention, promotion and treatment services.  


This year the theme for the day is "Depression: A Global Crisis". Depression affects more than 350 million people of all ages, in all communities, and is a significant contributor to the global burden of disease. Although there are known effective treatments for depression, access to treatment is a problem in most countries and in some countries fewer than 10% of those who need it receive such treatment.


To learn more about World Mental Health Day and read a Fact Sheet on depression, please  click here...     


Wishing you wellness, 


Gayathri Ramprasad, MBA, CPS
Founder & President, ASHA International
Gayathri Signature
The Healing Power of Knowledge 

   Knolwledge is Power







There is no health without mental health. Yet, like millions of people around the world, my family and I were ignorant about mental health issues.   


I was born and raised in Bangalore, India, amidst ancient traditions, and a large, loving extended family. My happy childhood, however, gave way to a traumatic adolescence. By the time I was 18, I was debilitated by generalized anxiety disorder and panic attacks. At 23, as a young mother in America, I struggled to free myself from the death-hold of depression.

For years, I lived in a frozen state of fear, hiding behind a veil of shame and secrecy - fear about losing my mind, fear of losing control in public, fear of being called crazy, fear of dishonoring my family,and destroying their future. But, it wasn't until I became severely suicidal and tried to kill myself that my family and I finally began to educate ourselves about mental health issues and seek help. Fortunately, with self-determination, adequate treatment, and the undying love and support of family and friends, I have recovered and am living a healthy, fulfilling life.

Looking back, ignorance about mental health issues pushed me to the brink of suicide, and sentenced my family and I to live in fear, shame and secrecy. Learning that depression is a highly debilitating illness that can be effectively treated, set us free to seek life-saving treatment and support.

Ignorance imprisons. Knowledge sets us free.


As we celebrate World Mental Health Day today, I encourage you to educate yourself about the signs and symptoms of depression, its diagnosis and treatment. And, please share your knowledge with your family and community. You never know, you might save a life!

To learn more about depression and its treatment, please click here...  


ASHA International: Bringing hope and healing to people's lives.
Upcoming Events:

Culture Counts: Variations in Cultural Value Systems and its Impact on Mental Health and Holistic Wellness - Cultural Competence Training, Friday, October 12, 2012, 3:30 - 5:00 pm, Alternatives Conference, Portland Marriott Downtown Waterfront, 1401 SW Naito Parkway, Portland, OR 97201

Don't Let Anyone Know: A Story About Mental Illness - The World Viewed Only the Silhouette! - A Book Reading and Discussion by author Helen Cochran Coffey, Tuesday, October 23, 2012, 6:30-8:00 PM, Cedar Mill Library, 12505 NW Cornell Road, Suite 13, Portland, Oregon 97229

The event is FREE and open to the public. It will be presented in the Community Room on the First Floor of the Library)

Dear friends, 
Please note that you are receiving this newsletter because you have subscribed to it, or, as a token of our appreciation for your valuable support. In case you no longer wish to receive the newsletter, please unsubscribe using the link at the bottom of the email. Thanks! 



Gayathri Ramprasad, MBA, CPS, is not a doctor, therapist or health care professional. She is a mental health advocate and Certified Peer Specialist (CPS). The information shared in this E-mail is for general information purposes only and therefore not intended to replace the medical advice afforded by physicians or other healthcare professionals. 


In This Issue
The Healing Power of Knowledge
Upcoming Events
10 Facts on Mental Health
Real People, Real Recovery
Mental Health for all by involving all
About Us
10 Facts on Mental Health

Fact 1

About half of mental disorders begin before the age of 14. Around 20% of the world's children and adolescents are estimated to have mental disorders or problems, with similar types of disorders being reported across cultures. Yet, regions of the world with the highest percentage of population under the age of 19 have the poorest level of mental health resources. Most low- and middle-income countries have only one child psychiatrist for every 1 to 4 million people.



Real People, Real Recovery
Profiles of Courage, Hope & Resilience 

Andrew Solomon

Andrew Solomon
Years ago, I read Andrew Solomon's award-winning book, The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression. The book has won him fourteen national awards, including the 2001 National Book Award, and is being published in 22 languages. It was also a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.  It has been on the New York Times bestseller list in both hardback and paperback; it has also been a bestseller in seven foreign countries.

While I was deeply impressed by Andrew's accomplishments, I was even more inspired by his eloquent writing, which, for the first time in my life provided a personal, cultural, global, and holistic perspective about depression and its treatment.

Vikram Patel: Mental health for all by involving all

Vikram Patel helps bring better mental health care to low-resource communities -- by teaching ordinary people to deliver basic psychiatric services.

About Us:
ASHA International's mission is to promote personal, organizational, and community wellness through mental health education, training, and support.

You can make a difference!