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World Mental Health Day

Today, October the 10th, on the occasion of World Mental Health Day, we reflect on how mental health is experienced by people who, after having undertaken a migration journey, now find themselves on the street.

I don't know if you have ever stopped to think what it would mean for you if, from one day to the next, you had to leave behind your home, your loved ones, all your belongings... Having to embark on a migration journey with no guarantee of success and with abysmal uncertainty.

It is true that, in general, before embarking on a migration journey, people tend to dream of reaching an idyllic place, where they will find many new jobs and social opportunities... but nothing could be further from the truth, this is an assumption that many of the people who leave their origins behind make before embarking on the journey.

Of course, all this leads to a number of serious mental health problems, from traumatic situations to feelings of frustration, anger, loneliness, among others. In short, mental disorders can arise from life experiences preceded by stressful factors, such as having to leave your home.

Have you ever stopped to think about having to leave your home or your people? How would you feel? Moreover, imagine arriving at this supposed idyllic place that you had idealised in your head and suddenly finding yourself in the streets.

"The street kills" and before continuing with this reflection, we would like to remind you that NO ONE DESERVES BEING A NOBODY. When you find yourself in a street situation, a lot of stigmatising processes, such as hate crimes, prejudices, etc. are pointed at you on a daily basis. There is a close relationship between mental health issues and homelessness. The social isolation of being homeless, or rather, the invisibility that a large part of society promotes for people who are going through this phase of their lives, is an aggravating factor for the health of these people. As is the feeling of loneliness. The street wears you down both physically and mentally, and being outside the formal system of our society aggravates it even more.

That is why today, we would like to give a voice to those who society and the system leave on the margins and take rights away from them. We must break with all the prejudices that exist in our society about homeless people. We would also like to stress that together we can address this gap that exists in our society in terms of health care for homeless people, including the need to address and treat serious mental disorders.



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