COMOX VALLEY, B.C. – The Canadian Mental Health Association is marking two special occasions this week.

Not only is it the organization’s 100th anniversary, it is also Mental Health Week from May 7th through to May 13th, 2018.

“Mental health is as important as physical health, so just as you maintain your physical health, look at maintaining your mental health, too,” said Vicki Swan.

Swan is an Administrative Coordinator with the association’s Mid-Island branch.

She said it’s especially important to get men involved in the conversation around mental health.

“We need to get men really involved at looking at mental health because with things like suicide rates, we have more men than women dying by suicide.”

She noted that men, who are suffering with a mental health issue, or a form of addiction, are least likely to seek help than women.

According to the association, one in five Canadians lives with mental health problems, a mental illness, or addiction.

Swan said everyone could benefit from learning about, celebrating and acknowledging the role that mental health plays in our lives.

The Canadian Mental Health Association was founded in 1918, and provides advocacy and resources that help to prevent mental health problems and illnesses, as well as support services.

Programs the association provides include housing, employment programs, homeless outreach, and suicide prevention training.

For more details on Mental Health Week, and the work of the association, visit mid-island.cmha.bc.ca.