Introducing for 2019 - Inside Our Minds’ Radical Mental Health Series, monthly workshops in the Pittsburgh area that will focus on a social justice perspective of mental illness. This series was made possible through funding from the Opportunity Fund.
Radical mental health is a dynamic and innovative term that describes how individuals and groups are finding new ways to understand and conceptualize mental health, mental illness, madness, and trauma. Radical mental health supports more inclusive and diverse perspectives on mental health, prioritizing the voices of people with lived experience of mental illness and madness as educators and experts. Those of us who identify as having lived experience face significant discrimination, oppression, and sanism in our society, yet our concerns are often unheard due to social exclusion and a lack of general public awareness. The Radical Mental Health Series will address this problem by educating the public and providing a space for open discussion of radical mental health and the problems facing our community.
The Radical Mental Health Series will include workshops with local activists, as well as at least one workshop from a national organization. The series will end with a social justice-themed Anonymous Open Mic, giving community members an opportunity for healing and creative expression through storytelling and performance. All events will be free and open to the public, held in different neighborhoods across Pittsburgh. Only accessible event spaces will be used, and ASL interpretation, as well as a livestream, will be provided at each event.
With this new series, we hope to reach new community members in the Pittsburgh area and build a community of support for people with lived experience of mental illness and madness, where people can learn about their rights, personal freedoms, and shared experiences. We hope this event will bring together people with and without lived experience of mental illness and madness, to promote shared understanding and anti-oppressive practices in our society.
More information coming soon!
For this series, we are looking for presenters to lead interactive community education workshops on radical mental health topics. Preference will be given to speakers with ties to the Greater Pittsburgh area and have lived experience of mental illness, madness, trauma, addiction / substance use disorder, or another similar experience. Topics may include, but are not limited to: workshops on topics that explore the intersections among sanism and other forms of oppression (racism, heterosexism, ableism, etc); workshops that address inequality, discrimination, and / or oppression in mental health spaces (hospitals, therapeutic settings, peer support, activism, etc); workshops on alternative mental health-related movements, ideology, and frameworks (Mad Pride, C/S/X, Neurodiversity, Disability Justice, etc).
To begin the series, the Inside Our Minds Team has designed the Radical Mental Health Community Survey. This survey will measure community knowledge and opinions on radical mental health topics, as well as overall familiarity with the work done at Inside Our Minds. For this survey, we are looking for responses from individuals in the Greater Pittsburgh area.