Community hopes to end stigma of mental health with brunch

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Community members gathered at the Racquet Club of Memphis on Saturday in support of Mental Health Awareness.

It's the fourth year of Breaking the Barriers of Mental Health brunch, held in May, which is Mental Health Awareness Month.

Brandy Flynn has been hosting the brunch all four years.

"We are just bringing awareness because nobody really thinks about it until something major happens," Flynn said.

Panelists and speakers addressed the stigma surrounding issues like addiction, trauma, and depression.

WMC Action News 5's Jerica Phillips was the emcee of the event. She shared how much mental health matters when covering stories and crime victims dealing with drama.

New Tri-State Defender publisher Bernal Smith II moderated a conversation about real world experiences with mental health.

Former NFL player turned life coach Terrance Pennington was the key note speaker who talked about his bout with depression after an injury.

"The body is going to do what the mind tells it to do," Patterson said. "Having awareness and having people and so many speakers so--I have problems I have issues, I suffer like you, but it's knowing how to get help and understanding we are all human."

Flynn hopes the brunch will continue to encourage the community to speak out and seek help.

"If we just pay attention to the signs in the beginning and let others know it's OK to talk to people then we can help each other," Flynn said.

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