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Bringing attention to mental health: Heartland Counseling Services hosts Mental Health Awareness Walk and Fair

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"The one upside to all of this is we're breaking down the stigma of mental health and mental illness."

Jennifer Hart, Director of Development.

SOUTH SIOUX CITY, Neb (KTIV) -- People from around Siouxland came out to raise awareness about mental health and mental illness for Mental Health Services and Substance Abuse Recovery Month.

Folks could shop around with different vendors and then walk by the riverfront.

Leaders said while people could take the walk whenever they wanted in an effort to help socially distance… they were still excited to see everyone come out in support.

"I think it's amazing. And it all goes back to show how important the issue is. And that we really need to just normalize this discussion," said Jennifer Jackson, Executive Director.

Board member Paula Wendte said it's not only nice to see the community come out in support but businesses as well.

"It's absolutely wonderful to get the organization the site that we need to be seen and out here. So our for-profit vendors, they're marketing their business. They get a little bit of kick from it. But they also donate back to Heartland. So, the money is going right back to Heartland Counseling too," said Paula Wendte, Board Member.

Director of Development Jennifer Hart said especially during these changing times with COVID it's important to watch your mental health.

She said with everything going on, people who wouldn't normally see struggles with their mental health could be experiencing some changes.

"It's very important to take care of ourselves, to stay healthy, to try to stay in contact with people as much as possible so that we're taking care of that mental health and we're not going to a darker space in our mind. And really just watching out for ourselves and watching out for those around us too," said Hart.

Officials add if you or anyone you know is in need of any type of mental health assistance, you can call Heartland Counseling Services at 402-494-3337.

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Emily Schrad

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