World Mental Health Day is celebrated this Sunday, October 10, and to mark this event, Facebook has launched a number of new help tools, as well as dedicated programming on the Watch and via Oculus VR, aimed at providing guidance and raising awareness about mental health concerns.
Which, given the different stresses of the last few years, is likely to be welcomed by many.
First of all, Facebook has developed a new mental health resource cards, together with UNICEF, as well as guides to BIPOC Mental Health Month, to provide equal access to mental health support.
Facebook is also working with UNICEF on the launch new Global mental health chatbot on WhatsApp, which will offer tips for “communicating what’s on your mind, breaking stigmas and starting a conversation with someone you’re worried about.”
“Resources for mental health and well-being, such as stress reduction exercises, can also be found the WHOT health alert chatbot on WhatsApp. Regional helplines, including a Loneliness chatbot tip developed by the Connection Coalition in the UK, are also available. ”
On Messenger, Facebook added a new one “I care about you”, In partnership with the WHO, which is designed to help start mental health talks.
Facebook also notes that several newsletter writers have focused on mental health issues, while also launching a new Facebook Watch series that focuses on the same:
“On October 11, a new season Peace of mind with Taraji premiere on Facebook Watch. Hosted by Golden Globe-winning actress Taraji P. Henson, each episode features interviews with celebrities, experts and everyday people on mental health topics with an emphasis on the black community. ”
Facebook further notes that it is a recent finale “Simone vs Herself” on Facebook Watch, she shows Olympic gymnast Simone Biles talking about the mental health challenges she faced in Tokyo this summer.
In addition, Facebook is also looking at the next phase of the digital connection, with a new VR experience at Oculus dealing with mental health experiences.
“Goliath: A game with reality is a free virtual reality experience at Oculus Quest that provides a detailed insight into the severity of schizophrenia. [The program] explores the true story of Jon, a man diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, through extensive VR and the skillful storytelling of an Oscar-winning actress Tilda Swinton. This experience is designed to promote empathy and encourage mental health conversations.”
Again, given the efforts of the last two years, most people seem to have faced mental health challenges in one form or another, and given that social platforms now play a key connecting role, it is important that each network provides such resources to help people in need and link them to relevant, useful tools and reference points.
Even if it doesn’t seem like a big addition, sometimes just a small questionnaire is all people need to take a step back and consider their mental state.
It is worth noting how we go on the weekend.
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