In commemoration of World Mental Health Day, Joy, Inc., a human flourishing company, has launched Mad Against Depression and Anxiety (MADA); a network of professionals and influential personalities combining their resources and experiences to fight depression.
The exclusive event which held at the Genesis Deluxe Cinema, Victoria Island, Lagos on 11 October, 2019, was organized in partnership with Y!TV and The Make It Happen Productions.
The gathering also saw the screening of Kemi ‘Lala’ Akindoju‘s short film, ‘FINE’ which was created to address the challenge of depression and anxiety. The film, which was co-written by Odenike Odeleye, tells the story of a young successful woman who seems to have her life under control but is battling with mental health challenges.
The event featured a panel discussion anchored by media personality, Lamide Akintobi, with Odenike Odeleye, Gbemi Ogunrinde and Kemi ‘Lala’ Akindoju sharing ideas, experiences, and practical solutions on addressing mental health in Nigeria.
Speaking during the panel session, ‘Lala‘ Akindoju said: “Producing the movie was an opportunity for me to raise awareness about depression, anxiety, and suicide across Africa. It is really important to know that the role we play in each other’s lives can help improve physical and mental health.”
Gbemi Ogunrinde, a psychotherapist, and member of the Central Working Committee of Joy, Inc., emphasized the importance of mental rest and practical ways to ensure well balanced mental state.
“Taking care of our mental health is just like taking care our physical health, everybody has it and we need to take care of it. Having a balanced mental is an extremely important issue when considering overall health and wellbeing. We have some practical steps one can take to improve and maintain your mental being including making time for yourself, building positive relationships, and getting active. With the MADA network, we want to help people get support in safe facilities across Africa while we continue to raise significant awareness,” Ogunrinde said.
According to the 2018 National Depression Report released by Joy, Inc. in partnership with NOIPolls, one out of every three Nigerians is at risk of depression, while the country has the seventh-highest rate of suicide in Africa.
Temidayo Taiwo-Sidiq is a Political Journalist, Analyst and Social Change Advocate with major interest in Nigerian Politics, Governance and Sports.