There is a very cool program that is flying under the radar, and we are happy to spread the gospel to you. In Canada, they have created the Stand Up For Mental Health (SMH) programs, which encourage those with mental health issues to use stand-up comedy as therapy.
“We use comedy to give consumers a powerful voice and help reduce the stigma and discrimination around mental illness” says David Granirer, comedian and founder of the organization. “The idea is that laughing at our setbacks raises us above them. It makes people go from despair to hope, and hope is crucial to anyone struggling with adversity. Studies prove that hopeful people are more resilient and also tend to live longer, healthier lives.”
People who suffer from mental illnesses are encouraged to create and perform original comedy about their mental health journeys. These laughter-therapy programs are then performed across Canada at treatment centers, corporations, government agencies, college campuses, military bases, and for the general public.
And Canada Post just announced a new $50,000 partnership with SMH that will allow the program to continue to flourish and expand to even more cities throughout Canada.