Published: Sep. 20, 2023 at 6:03 PM CDT|Updated: 13 hours ago

WAKEFIELD, Mich. (WLUC) – Mental health comes in many forms and affects people and ages differently.

Gogebic County Great Start Family Liaison Crystal Suzik says today’s Walk in My Shoes rally is all about educating and empowering people to know it’s okay to reach out for help.

“It doesn’t matter what your background is, who you are, mental health is just like your physical health. You need to take care of it and address it just the way you do anything else,” said Suzik.

Taking place at the VFW in Wakefield, the Walk in My Shoes rally had keynote speakers discuss mental health support. Philip Hefner’Gardiepy from Northpoint Behavioral Health says his goal is to encourage people across our area.

Volunteer and Community Mental Health care manager Dustin Pitrone says Walk a Mile in My Shoes means it’s important not to judge and to seek to understand.

“Instead of judging a person on an act or behavior, look at their whole history. Look at all the things they may have gone through without making that judgment. So walking a mile in my shoes is walking with me through my life’s journey and maybe you will understand a bit better,” said Pitrone.

More information on mental health awareness can be found online. If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health emergency, dial 988.