SUNFLOWERS SHED LIGHT ON MENTAL HEALTH

Mental Health

By WVUA 23 Web Writer Sarah Rumfelt

You may have spotted some mental health sunflowers around Tuscaloosa these past two weeks. The sculptures are part of an effort to end the stigma around mental health in West Alabama.

The Tuscaloosa Mental Health Alliance and University of Alabama students began the Plant the Seed Campaign on March 29. Since then, several local businesses have put the sunflowers on display and made donations to the campaign.

Alliance President Joseph Abrams said awareness is important in Alabama, where mental health funding and facilities have decreased in recent years.

“You have to start with awareness,” Abrams said. “So you want to let people frame the issue, letting them know that these issues are there and then facilitating this conversation.”

The campaign ended Wednesday night at Five Bar in downtown Tuscaloosa. Food and wine was served and Mental Health Commissioner Jim Perdue spoke to attendees.

All proceeds went to the Alliance to benefit mental health awareness and treatment.

For more information on the Tuscaloosa Mental Health Authority and mental health in Alabama , visit their website.

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