NAMI Mental Health Walk at ZOOMiami Raises Awareness and Funds

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It's National Mental Health Awareness Month and statistics show more people in their late teens, early 20s, and those over 65 are turning to suicide instead of getting help.

National Alliance on Mental Illness Miami-Dade CEO Susan Holtzman says there are a few reasons for this.

"The loneliness that came about from COVID has impacted youth, especially, and that's why we're seeing a rise [in suicides] among youth," she said. "There's also evidence that a dependence on social media has fueled a rise in suicide ideation and action."

More than 3,700 people participated in the Walk for Mental Health Awareness at ZOOMiami, Saturday morning, raising more than $380,000 to provide programs for those who need help, according to NAMI.

"We've reached over 10,000 youth since 2018," she said. "Now we're reaching out to families so that the youth and the families are speaking the same language so they can talk about mental illness, mental health, how do you know when you need help and where do you go to get help."

Miami Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava was in attendance at the Walk for Mental Health Awareness at ZOOMiami.

"When the community comes together and realizes the importance of addressing mental health issues then, truly, we can solve these challenges," she said.

To get help for yourself or others call the NAMI Miami-Dade helpline at 305-665-2540 or the national helpline at 9-8-8.

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