Danville’s fashion show combines mental health and fashion
DANVILLE, Va. (WDBJ) – The Many Faces of Mental Health fashion show took place today at the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research.
The owner of Mental Health Focal Point organized the fashion show in an effort to end the stigma behind mental health.
“Very often people don’t want to talk about mental health. It’s a way to get people to have fun, to have fun, to get excited about something and also to give them information about mental health,” said Angela Williams, owner of Focus Point Mental. Health.
The models in the show came from all walks of life.
“Some of the models in the fashion show are professional models, and then we have people who actually suffer from mental illness,” Williams said. “Then we also have people who may want to do modeling but were a little shy or may have anxiety. That’s where ‘the many faces of mental health’ comes from, because not everyone doesn’t seem to have a mental health diagnosis. Any day, any of us could experience depression, anxiety, or any other diagnosis.
Many of the clothing designs depicted bipolar disorder, anxiety, and depression as a way for designers to show how mental illness can sometimes feel.
“When you put on cool clothes you feel better and sometimes whatever you’re wearing you can tell how another person is feeling, which is why we’re here,” Williams said.
One of the show’s goals is to showcase mental health through fashion.
“In today’s world, many of our young people express themselves through fashion. With everything going on in the world, mental health is at an all time high with all the diagnoses we have. I strongly believe that fashion is a silent way of saying how you feel,” said Kelly Cunningham, the fashion show’s creative director.
For Maurie Van Buren, it’s a way for her son to get out of his comfort zone.
“It’s something he’s never done before and he had the courage to do it. I’m so proud of him for that. Trying new things can be difficult for people with limitations. So I feel like he believes it’s important and so do I,” said fashion show participant Maurie Van Buren.
A portion of the show’s proceeds went to the nonprofit that helps those who can’t afford therapy get the help they need.
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