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SURIA KLCC BRINGS MENTAL HEALTH TO THE FOREFRONT IN MONTH-LONG AWARENESS CAMPAIGN

Kuala Lumpur, 11 October 2022 – Mental health has long been a problem that requires urgent attention. This was true long before COVID-19 hit Malaysia, and it remains true even as we recover in the endemic phase. One of the most significant barriers to addressing mental health in this country is the stigma associated with it.

In conjunction with World Mental Health Month in October, Suria KLCC together with The Body Shop invites the public to be part of the change in de-stigmatising mental health problems in their  month-long campaign. The campaign with the tagline #YouMatter starts today until 10 November  2022. 

Following the success of last year’s mental health awareness campaign, Suria KLCC will once  again be joining hands with the Green Ribbon Group, a non-governmental organisation (NGO)  that champions a community approach to mental health. Also in collaboration for this year’s  campaign is MIASA (Mental Illness Awareness & Support Association). 

As a lead-up to the #YouMatter campaign, artworks by youth artists with lived experiences of  mental illness were showcased at the Park Mall of Suria KLCC entrance area from 3 October until  8 October 2022. These works of passion from the National Art Gallery (via the Young Art  Entrepreneurs programme) illustrate the artists’ personal struggles.  

Safe Space @ Suria KLCC 

Suria KLCC is the first and only mall in Malaysia to take a mental health awareness campaign to  the next level via the creation of a safe space for the community. This space, dubbed the Safe  Space @ Suria KLCC, is designed for people to gather and converse on the subject of mental  health.

The Safe Space @ Suria KLCC last year was a hit as it drew many visitors. As mental issues do  not discriminate, this year’s mental health awareness campaign promotes a more inclusive  approach. #YouMatter shines a light on mental health issues afflicting the youth today and what  the community can do to help support them.  

The Safe Space @ Suria KLCC will be open for the duration of this campaign and can be found at Level 1, Ampang Mall. Open from 10am to 10pm daily, the space will serve as a venue for  engaging activities such as workshops, talks and panel discussions by mental health  professionals. Visitors can also get more information from a mental health volunteers stationed  here. 

“The last two years marked a turbulent and uncertain time for all. With the pandemic in the rear view mirror, there’s no better time to reconnect and focus on recovery. Mental health awareness is  a long-term CSR effort by the Suria KLCC Group and we are committed to keeping the dialogue  open. We’ve engaged professionals and those with specialised expertise to help in curating the  content and activities that will be held in this area.  

“The Safe Space @ Suria KLCC is a welcoming space where the community can come together  to share and learn. After all, a problem shared is a problem halved – we want people to leave the  space feeling better and with more insight about themselves or others,” said Andrew Brien,  Executive Director of Suria KLCC Sdn Bhd. 

Expressing her elation to be working with Suria KLCC for a second year running, Green Ribbon  Group Founder and President, YAM Tengku Puteri Raja Tengku Puteri Iman Afzan Al-Sultan  Abdullah said, “Efforts like the Safe Space must continue to not only show our support for those  with mental health problems, but to also highlight our ongoing commitment towards doing more for  the cause. The focus on youth mental health this year is especially timely for the Green Ribbon  Group. We are very fortunate to be able to pilot programmes in secondary schools and  universities that focus on mental health literacy, self-management and peer support. This has  always been a dream of mine – to reach out to our youth and empower them to prioritise their  mental health.” 

“MIASA was where I began my advocacy and outreach. It is fantastic that we are now partners  alongside Suria KLCC and The Body Shop for the Safe Space. Mental health knows no  boundaries. Together we can always do more,” she added.

Founder and President of MIASA, Anita Abu Bakar said, “Looking after each other should be  everyone’s responsibility and not just the health sector alone. This is why we should strive to  prioritise community-based mental health support – so that the burden of care can be shifted from  being shouldered solely by our incredible frontliners to being shouldered by all of us. Through  efforts like this, it is our sincere hope that the scale of our response to the issues surrounding  community mental health can begin to match the scale of the challenge itself. 

“This collaboration with the Safe Space sets an example of how collective effort can create a big  impact and spur action in the community. MIASA is honoured to be part of this initiative and would  like to welcome everyone, especially the youth, to enjoy this space.” 

Managing Director of The Body Shop Malaysia, Datin Mina Cheah said, “”At The Body Shop, we  believe that the voices of our youth matter and they should be seen and be heard. As we step into  World Mental Health month, it is important to create awareness about mental health and well being, especially for young people. Setting up this Safe Space alongside Suria KLCC, MIASA and  Green Ribbon Group is our way of advocating for our youth through promoting and protecting the  value of mental health. Young people with their youthful energy and ideals are the change the  world needs today. Thus, overcoming stigma, building resilience and empowering their self esteem is truly a community effort to ensure we help them reach their potential as the  changemakers of today and tomorrow.” 

In addition, Suria KLCC has pledged to support NGOs championing mental health through  monetary support from the sales of the Suria Ribbon Pin during festive campaigns. So far, a fund  of over RM20,000 has been raised and donated to mental health-related NGOs, such as  Befrienders KL and the Malaysian Mental Health Association. This is an on-going initiative and the  Suria Ribbon Pin can be purchased from the Concierge at RM10 per pin.

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