Bell Let’s Talk Day 2015 is January 28: Join the national conversation about mental health!

Montréal, Monday, January 5, 2015

Bell Let’s Talk Day 2015 is January 28: Join the national conversation about mental health!

  • Bell Let’s Talk national spokesperson Clara Hughes again invites you to the conversation about mental health on the fifth annual Bell Let’s Talk Day
  • Michael Landsberg, Howie Mandel and Mary Walsh join Clara, Michel Mpambara and Stefie Shock on the Bell Let’s Talk team
  • Learn 5 simple ways to help end the stigma around mental illness
  • On January 28, talk, text, tweet and share to help grow Bell’s funding for Canadian mental health
  • Please visit Bell.ca/LetsTalk to learn more and download the toolkit

Bell today launched the 2015 Bell Let’s Talk campaign in support of Canadian mental health, leading up to the fifth annual Bell Let’s Talk Day on January 28. National spokesperson Clara Hughes is again leading the campaign to invite all Canadians to talk, text and tweet about mental health and help build a Canada free of the stigma of mental illness.

“We had a great year talking about mental health in 2014, with a record Bell Let’s Talk Day driving new mental health funding and then the incredible Big Ride for Bell Let’s Talk that shared the anti-stigma message in every corner of the country. I look forward to taking the conversation even further in 2015 on our journey to a stigma-free Canada,” said Clara, Canada’s six-time Olympic medalist and national Bell Let’s Talk ambassador since the initiative launched in 2010. “As we work to end the stigma, Bell Let’s Talk is also funding new mental health care, research and workplace initiatives. On January 28, you can join the conversation and drive Bell’s donations to mental health too by talking, texting, tweeting and sharing on Facebook.”

5 simple ways to help end the stigma

While 1 in 5 Canadians will experience mental illness at some point in their lives, the lingering stigma means 2 in 3 will struggle in silence fearing judgment and rejection. This year’s Bell Let’s Talk’s campaign focuses on 5 simple ways we can all help end the stigma around mental illness:

  • Language matters – pay attention to the words you use about mental illness
  • Educate yourself – learn, know and talk more, understand the signs
  • Be kind – small acts of kindness speak a lot
  • Listen and ask – sometimes it’s best to just listen
  • Talk about it – start a dialogue, break the silence

“Ending the stigma of mental illness depends on building greater awareness, acceptance and action. These are 5 simple ways all Canadians can help build a culture in which people struggling with mental illness feel supported and not afraid,” said Mary Deacon, Chair of Bell Let’s Talk. “We are so grateful to all our spokespeople, ambassadors and partners for leading the conversation about how we can all contribute to creating a nation free of the stigma around mental illness.”

To learn more about the campaign, and to download the Bell Let’s Talk toolkit to help get the conversation started, please visit Bell.ca/LetsTalk.

The 2015 Bell Let’s Talk team

This year, TSN host Michael Landsberg, comedian Howie Mandel and entertainer Mary Walsh join Clara and Québec spokespeople Stefie Shock and Michel Mpambara in the Bell Let’s Talk campaign.

The long-time host of TSN’s Off The Record, Michael Landsberg is a renowned advocate for mental health. Howie Mandel is the internationally known comedian, actor and TV host. Mary Walsh is a social activist, comedian and actor whose work includes the iconic news satire show This Hour Has 22 Minutes.

In addition, a new ambassador, professional golfer Andrew Jensen, will join comedian and writer Kevin Breel, CFL veteran Shea Emry and musician Robb Nash in spreading the conversation about mental health. Together, the Bell Let’s Talk team will be talking about their own mental health experiences in media and at events as they encourage Canadians to join the conversation.

Join the conversation on Bell Let’s Talk Day and help donations grow. On January 28, for every text message, wireless and long distance call made by Bell Canada and Bell Aliant customers, every tweet using #BellLetsTalk, and every Facebook share of that day’s Bell Let’s Talk Day image at Facebook.com/BellLetsTalk, Bell will donate 5 cents more to Canadian mental health programs.

“The Bell Let’s Talk conversation continues to grow each year, and we continue to make progress toward ending the stigma by talking about how mental illness affects all of us,” said George Cope, President and CEO of Bell Canada and BCE. “On Bell Let’s Talk Day, every one of us has the opportunity to support those who struggle and help drive funding and action in Canadian mental health.”

In 2014, Canadians answered the call with a total of 109,451,718 messages including texts, wireless and long distance calls, tweets and Facebook shares, meaning Bell added another $5,472,585,90 to its Bell Let’s Talk funding commitment. Based on its original $50 million donation and the results of the last 4 Bell Let’s Talk Days, Bell has now committed more than $67.5 million to Canadian mental health.

Bell’s donations are made at no extra charge to Bell Let’s Talk Day participants, though normal long distance or text charges, if any, apply. The Bell Let's Talk mental health initiative Bell Let’s Talk promotes mental health based on 4 action pillars – anti-stigma, care and access, research, and workplace best practices. The initiative supports mental health leaders across the country including the Royal Ottawa Hospital, Institut universitaire en santé mentale de Montréal,Hôpital Charles-LeMoyne, Montreal Jewish Hospital, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), the University of British Columbia, the Douglas Mental Health University Institute, Queen’s University, La Fondation du Centre hospitalier universitaire de Québec, Concordia University, Brain Canada, Kids Help Phone, Sunnybrook Hospital and Université Laval Foundation.

The annual Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund supports front-line mental health organizations in every region of the country. The Fund has provided grants of $5,000 to $50,000 to hundreds of community organizations focused on improving access to programs and services that support people living with mental health issues.

About Bell

Bell is Canada's largest communications company, providing consumers and business customers with wireless, TV, Internet, home phone and business communications services. Bell Media is Canada's premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio and digital media. Bell is wholly owned by Montréal's BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE). For more information, please visit Bell.ca

Media inquiries:

Jacqueline Michelis

Bell Media Relations (613)785-1427 jacqueline.michelis@bell.ca @Bell_News

To learn more, please visit Bell.ca/LetsTalk.

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