Erasing the Stigma Leadership Awards and Natasha Tracy

So, as it turns out I’m a bit of a mental illness stigma eraser – or at least so sayeth the amazing folks at Didi Hirsch. I’m extremely proud, honoured and humbled to announce that Didi Hirsch will be honouring me at this year’s Erasing the Stigma Leadership Awards in Los Angeles.

What’s the Erasing the Stigma Leadership Award by Didi Hirsch?

The Erasing the Stigma Leadership Awards are held annually to honor advocates for mental health.

The 2014 Awards, #erasingthestigma celebrates the social media revolution, honoring those men and women who harness the power of social media to accelerate change and help erase the stigma of mental illness.

#erasingthestigma supports the work of Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services. Didi Hirsch has fought stigma and helped those struggling with mental illness and substance abuse for more than 70 years. Didi Hirsch serves more than 74,000 children, adults and families each year at 11 locations and more than 90 schools throughout Los Angeles County. Over 90% of those we serve live in poverty. The Didi Hirsch Suicide Prevention Center is one of the first and largest in the country. Its Crisis Line handles calls from all of Southern California.

Erasing the Stigma Leadership Awards and Natasha TracyBasically, the Didi Hirsch people are like angels for people with mental illness and I’m lucky to be mentioned in the same breath as them.

Previous honorees of the Erasing the Stigma Leadership Awards include First Ladies, actors, film producers, musicians and humanitarians including such amazing folks as Quincy Jones, Kay Redfild Jamison, Carrie Fisher and many others. Honestly, I’m astonished to be in such great company.

Join Me at the Erasing the Stigma Leadership Awards 2014

All this is to say, you can buy a ticket to the award ceremony and hear me speak, if you’re so inclined. (Check out last year’s event.) Now, these aren’t tickets that your average folks can afford as this is a fundraiser. But, if you want to make a worthy donation, I highly recommend the Didi Hirsch organization. No, not just because they’re honoring me, but because they do amazing work for people with mental illnesses who have no other avenues of help. I can’t imagine the number of lives that have been saved by their suicide hotline alone. The more I look into them, the more I like them.

The Erasing the Stigma Leadership Awards are on April 24th in Beverly Hills, California. I would love to say “hi” to you there.

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  1. Pingback: publichealthwatch | Stigma Still A Major Hurdle In Getting People The Mental Health Care They Need

  2. I have a long time distrust of awards, which probably was solidified by the Angel episode Blood Money. Maybe that pop culture reference makes sense maybe not. Also, I made the error of using a pseudonym on another blog comment section, for quite good reasons not relating to this site at all. What I wrote I will probably put elsewhere online, as I think I came up with some good points.
    I must acknowledge that you work very hard for the most part in informing people. I just wish on the really controversial posts, which you yourself have highlighted several times as ‘marmite’, that you would reply to people who fly off the handle and seem to promote stigmas when they must accept some personal responsibility, I saw one comment portraying all of us Bipolars as bullying fiends, or something close to that and found it comical that that was allowed to stay on. Maybe I’m flying close to the sun by being this open, but I only do it because I respect your whole-hearted approach to be any less than whole-hearted myself.

    • Hi Martin,

      That’s a reasonable criticism. But a) I’m not here to fight with people. I don’t like doing it and I tend not to engage in it. b) People who say openly hateful things don’t need me to point out how horrible and hateful they are – they are just trolls and should be ignored.

      Additionally, what I have to say on the topic is usually in the article – I wrote it – so I don’t necessarily have anything to add afterwards. If people wish to discuss it, they can go ahead, but that’s more about them than about me.

      I have precious, little functional time and I choose not to spend it on people I don’t like.

      – Natasha Tracy

      • OK, that’s the most erudite, and dignified thing you have said to me, and maybe I go about things in a headstrong way at times for some people’s liking, so thank you. I really mean that.

        I almost put down just how impressed I was by your radio/podcast guest appearance recently. It certainly allowed me to get a much better feel for you as a living person than the sometimes restrictive nature of prose/ writer persona that I had relied upon beforehand. I hope you have a great time and make the most of your opportunity to give a public speech in such a prestigious environment. If only there was a way for some live coverage of the event online etc.. maybe in 10 years time when there is even less stigma??

            • natasha, you have many “moments” in my book. i personally think getting awards feels good. i’ve had one or two; i know we can’t rely on them to make us feel good every day, but it puts a smile on some of our faces and what is wrong with that! there is no shame in getting an award in my opinion. you are not my kid, but if you were, i’d be saying, “i’m proud of you honey!” and give you a well deserved hug.
              good on you natasha! thank you for being here, you give me much to look forward to in such a challenging life.
              d

            • Thanks Denise, that’s very kind of you :)

              It does put a smile on my face. Kind of a big one for a long time and for that I am grateful.

              – Natasha Tracy

      • I’m very glad you let that comment stand. If you didn’t there would be no discussion of it. Good, great decision.

  3. Congratulations Natasha!! How wonderful and deserving! From your blog here, to the myriad of your other accomplishments in the bipolar/mi fields, shows us all, how truly dedicated you are to our cause.
    The very thought of you being in the company of such brilliant pioneers, touches me to tears.
    You are an inspiration to all that suffer, and truly a soft place to fall, is right here w/ you.
    I wish it was an Oscar. I guess it kinda is. I’m so, so happy for you. xoxoxo ((hugs))

    • Hi Stevie,

      Yup, it kind of is an Oscar :)

      Thank-you for your kind thoughts. I really do try my best to do the best I can and it’s so rewarding to be recognized. It just means that, on some level, I am succeeding.

      – Natasha Tracy

  4. Don’t know how I believe in award’s in general. In many area especially those with money to have plaques etc. made to award the it appears they swap these award’s back and forth like the “wash your hand and I wash yours” extremely common in certain area as politics and certain professions. I do though think you are doing a great job and other then a small tendency to censorship I think your blog is as good as one can get. Regardless of that I don’t think an award for you is warranted. Not that I am in any position to say so or not, but congrats, nonetheless. You are doing a great public service here and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Will N.

    • Not that you don’t deserve an award. Just think no one does I thing normally the qpq and otherwise. Sorry didn’t think I was clear.

  5. I have always believed you to be an incredible person, Facebook aside, I have shared with you and all of the others some stories I probably wouldn’t have opened up to others as easily ! I can only say that in the short time I’ve been aware of your work, I believe that you deserve such an honor, and thus I congratulate you ! Just don’t get a big head and leave us all behind in your dust !!! LOL !!!

  6. Congratulations Natasha!
    No one is more deserving of this award than you!
    You put Canada in it’s own niche in itself.

    You’ve given so many ( including myself) help/ hope.
    Plus a safe haven to express ourselves in however format .
    I think the greatest thing I want to say to you ( believe me,those who know me,know it’s a big thing)
    I truly respect you.
    Those words don’t come forth often to others.
    Peace/ tranquility.
    Xxxxxxx.