BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and local organizations are taking time to remind people to take care of their emotional well-being.

Mental health advocates say it’s a topic that needs to be talked about now more than ever before. The World Health Organization reports a 25% increase in anxiety and depression since the start of the pandemic. Experts say eating healthy, getting enough sleep, and avoiding drugs and alcohol are a few ways to help yourself. They also encourage people to seek professional help.

“When you feel like you need help, asking for that support is going to be the thing that makes you strong, and shows that you’re a strong person,” said Julianna Everdyke, Director of Duel Recovery and Community Integration for Coordinated Care Services, Inc.

Mental Health Counselors with Catholic Charities recommend spending ten minutes in nature every day, practicing random acts of kindness, and utilizing any vacation or personal time offered at work.

There are all different kinds of ways to find support in the Western New York Community.

Villa of Hope: Children, Adolescents, and Adults/Mental Health, Substance Use and Peer Support Services

  • Call (585) 328-0843

Crisis Services

Catholic Charities Mental Wellness Assistance

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Abby Fridmann is an anchor and reporter who joined the News 4 team in November 2020. See more of her work here.