Music Therapy Ride strikes right chord

By The Motrorcyclegalz

Music Therapy RideNo one really needs convincing on how important music is in our lives.

The Music Therapy Ride celebrates 10 years on Sept. 17, and while the ride is predominantly motorcycles, classic cars and other vehicles are invited too.

With the support of the Vancouver police department’s motorcycle drill team, participants can expect a non-stop ride from Richmond to Whistler, taking in some of the best scenery in the Lower Mainland.

“They [the VPD Motorcycle drill team] lead us all the way to Whistler,” said event organizer Patrick Zulinov, assistant program director of FM radio station Shore 104. “We don’t stop at one light. It is like a presidential motorcade. They scoot around us, up to the next light, stop all the traffic for us — all the way to Whistler.”

Full story at Vancouver Sun

Will Students Take a Mental Health Test?

By Laura Landro

Students Take Mental Health TestAs they return to classes this week, ninth-graders in Wisconsin’s Fond du Lac school district will be sent home with something for parents to sign besides the usual forms for sports activities and field trips: a consent for their children to undergo a mental-health screening.

With rising concern about adolescent depression and suicide, more schools are turning to screening tests to identify those at risk and, if necessary, help them get treatment. Voluntary screenings are being offered through school health classes, school-based health clinics and community agencies, which then can refer children for diagnosis and treatment to school psychologists or local health care providers.

Full story at Wall Street Journal

Schoolkids who face depression need help from parents, teachers

By Vancouver Sun

Rick Rypien

The Aug. 15 death of former Canucks forward Rick Rypien at the age of 27 reminds us that depression can be a fatal disease that must be taken seriously. His toughness and tenacity on the ice masked his struggle with the most common form of mental illness, clinically known as major depressive disorder.

The need to recognize this often hidden disease is particularly urgent now as children head back to school in September.

The U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration cites population studies that show 10 to 15 per cent of children and adolescents have some symptoms of depression and that mental health problems affect one in every five young people at any given time.

Full story at Vancouver Sun

The faces behind bipolar disorder

By Andrea Boyarsky

bipolar disorder

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — A smiling Erica Kovacs sat at the front of the crowded room, answering questions about her mental illness. She talked passionately about her life over the past eight years and how she is coping with bipolar disorder.

The 31-year-old Bay Terrace resident is one of more than 10 million Americans living with the disorder characterized by mood shifts consisting of manic highs and depressive lows.

On Aug. 10, she participated in a film and panel discussion with those living with bipolar disorder, their family members, and mental health professionals, presented by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Staten Island and the South Beach Psychiatric Center as part of their annual Summer Mental Health Film Festival.

Full story at

Brandon Marshall has star role model in coping with mental health struggles

By George Diaz

brandon marshall, mental health

Crazy courage manifests itself in different ways, whether it’s asking a dentist to take your wisdom teeth without Novocain or taking a gun to your hand and playing Russian Roulette.

Herschel Walker was sharing his conflicted life journey to caregivers for the U.S. Army Wounded Warrior program recently, but the message was equally appropriate to athletes, accountants, lawyers busboys and star NFL wide receivers who face daily struggles with mental disorders in this country. About 60 million Americans experience some sort of mental health problem every year.

Brandon Marshall, you are not alone.

He recently went public with a mental disorder marked by broken relationships and self-image issues, coupled with mood swings. It marks the significant first step in getting help, as Walker did more than a decade ago trying to shake his personal demons.

Full story at Orlando Sentinel