Chude Jideonwo, the founder of Joy Inc., a mental health wellness centre in Nigeria, is set to launch Mad Against Depression and Anxiety (MADA), a networking event to combat depression, on 11 October 2019, at the Terra Kulture, Victoria Island, Lagos.
Mad Against Depression and Anxiety, which will be announced officially on World Health Day, is a network of professionals and influential personalities with the goal to combine their resources and experience in order to fight depression in Nigeria, while also shedding light on mental illness and pertinent actions that can be employed in dealing with these issues.
Speaking about the network, Chude Jideonwo, the founder of Joy Inc., explained that it has become imperative to address suicide rate in Nigeria, especially by creating safe spaces for everyone who needs help and provide them the required professional and emotional support.
“As members of MADA network, we want to lend a positive voice to the conversation on mental health, and direct people to places and facilities where they can seek help. Depression is a devastating illness; it robs people of their energy, sleep, memory, concentration, joy, their ability to love, and sometimes, their willingness to live. We want them to know that it is human to feel the way they feel,” he said.
As part of activities commemorating the event, the initiative has partnered with Y! TV and Make It Happen Productions, which is led by actor and producer, Kemi Lala Akindoju, to premiere ‘FINE’, a short film about how to effectively handle depression, and how shame has influenced people’s ability to open up about their bout with depression.
According to the national depression survey conducted by Joy Inc., in partnership with NOIPolls, one in every four Nigerian is at risk of depression. The country also has the seventh highest rate of suicide in Africa.