VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – “Spread courage, not fear.” That’s the message behind a new public awareness campaign from the people behind the annual Courage To Come Back Awards.
Those awards, which are usually held in May, have been pushed back until at least the fall because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
.@CoastMH postpones "with heavy hearts" the 2020 Courage To Come Back Awards, set for May 7th at the Vancouver Convention Centre, due to the provincial government's advice on large events. Organizers say an "alternative celebration" is in the works, but no new date is set.
— John Ackermann (@jackermann) March 13, 2020
However since they are the single biggest fundraiser for Coast Mental Health, CEO Darrell Burnham says they still needed to find a way to get the word out, hence the “spread courage, not fear” campaign.
“We still need support and the support that we would have received from the donors at the Courage awards, we still need support even more to help our clients navigate this difficult time,” he says.
Burnham points out many of the clients the society serves are among the most vulnerable to COVID-19. “[That] means that if they did get the virus, they would probably have a very hard outcome, so we’re doing the best we can to actually protect them from the virus and making sure they’re safe and also that they’re moving forward in their lives.”
He adds the message behind Courage has never been more urgent.
“We’re trying to use the hashtag ‘Spread Courage, Not Fear’ to speak to messages of hope and resilience and moving forward as well as to highlight some of the work that Coast has done.”
Coast Mental Health has provided housing, support services, employment, and education to those with mental health and other challenges for more than 45 years.
NEWS 1130 has been a proud sponsor of the Courage To Come Back Awards since 1999. They recognize British Columbians based on five different categories: Mental Health, Addiction, Medical, Physical Rehabilitation, and Youth. An alternate date for the event has not been set.