Local businesses team up to raise mental health awareness

Campaign to Change Direction will be marching in Oktoberfest parade to raise mental health awareness

A coalition of local businesses will be using one of La Crosse’s most popular events to raise awareness for the issue of mental health.

The Campaign to Change Direction has been gaining support in the community since launching in La Crosse earlier this year.

The campaign encourages people to recognize the ‘five signs of suffering’ which include personality changes, agitation, withdrawal, poor self-care, and hopelessness.

The group which includes many of La Crosse’s largest employers is hoping to use the exposure of next week’s Maple Leaf parade to make people more aware of those mental health warning signs.

“We’re kicking it off with the Oktoberfest parade, where we will have our employees walking with other businesses; it’ll be called Businesses Supporting Mental Wellness,” says Sam Van Riper of Trane Company. “We’re going to bring it out to the community and we’re really proud to be one of 40 companies that will be walking in the parade.”

The Maple Leaf Parade is next Saturday, October 3rd.

For more information on the Campaign to Change Direction you can go to www.changedirection.org.