McCann Worldgroup And NCSS Encourage More Open Conversations About Mental Health In “Beyond The Label” Movement

Now in its second year, the “Beyond the Label” campaign by McCann Worldgroup Singapore and National Council of Social Service encourages both Singaporeans and persons with mental health conditions to take a more proactive stance towards seeking help. This isto address findings from the 2017 Attitude Study, by the National Council of Social Service (NCSS),which found that more than 1 in 2 adults in Singapore are not willing to live with, live nearby or work with a person with mental health condition.

Encouraging Singaporeans to open up and talk about mental health

Videos co-created with persons in recovery as well as their colleagues, caregivers and parents presenting different perspectives of mental health stigma. This includesthe self-stigma imposed by persons with mental health conditions due to fear and shame of their conditions, as well as  misconceptions by parents, caregivers, friends and colleagues in social situations with persons seeking recovery. These will be distributed on outdoor and digital platforms, TV and social media. Outdoor and social key visualsaddressingreal-life stigmatising opinions and statements also encourage both parties to have more honest conversations about the topic, so that persons with mental health conditions can find the strength to seek help.Additional social engagement with key content partners and influencers will be progressively rolled out from 28th Sep – end October to encourage messages of support from the community.Links to assets in Annex A.

Beyond the Label helpbot to simplify search for mental health help and resources

To help alleviate the search for help and resources for recovery, NCSS,  McCann Worldgroup Singapore and AI-technology partner AiChat developed Belle, the Beyond the Label Helpbot – a Facebook Messenger Chatbot to connect youth, adults & seniors to mental health resources and helplines, and educate the public with tips on how to interact and support persons with mental health conditions. The public can access the Helpbot via

Tymosiewicz Koh Mui Mui, parent of a 19-year-old daughter who had recovered from depression, said “I couldn’t fully understand what my daughter was going through then, and it hurt me to see her in pain. It was not easy for us to find and get the appropriate help for her. Now with the Beyond the Label Helpbot, I think it would be easier and very useful to parents who are in a similar situation as it makes help more accessible.”

First-ever Beyond the Label Fest to promote deeper understanding on the topic of mental health.

Beyond the Label Fest, an inaugural pop-up market that promotes more meaningful conversations and deeper understanding on the topic of mental health, launched onSaturday, 28 September at Timbre+.Singapore’sSpeaker of Parliament, Mr Tan Chuan-Jin, attended as the Guest-of-Honour. The event featured products for sale,and workshops by local indie brands eager to support the movement. It also featuredthe “Activation Box”, an immersive multi-sensory experience comprising various experiential activities to help one understand mental health conditions and how to better support someone in distress, by the Youth Alliance – a network of public agencies with representatives from government, healthcare and social service agencies, and Institutes of Higher Learning (IHLs).

Youth and Creativity against Mental Health Stigma

In conjunction with the Youth Alliance’s and youth-related key stakeholders’ efforts to build deeper engagements with the youth, McCann Worldgroup Singapore launched a Creativity against Mental Health Stigma youth outreach initiative, with Temasek Polytechnic as IHL partner this year. Aspiring creative professionals from the Temasek Polytechnic School of Design are briefed to develop campaigns, products and innovations to raise mental health awareness as it becomes an increasingly relevant topic for the youth community, and address the discomfort of interacting with people in recovery. Their outputs were guided by various agency professionals, and exhibited at the Beyond the Label Fest as an educational activation.

Alfred Wee, Creative Director, McCann Worldgroup Singapore said “When NCSS launched Beyond the Label – Singapore’s first ever national movement totackle stigma towards those with mental health conditionslast year, the Facebook page and social platforms became a safe spaces for the public to share their stories of recovery. We recognised that many are seeking more open channels of communication at home and work regarding their mental health, and easier access to mental health resources and help. We hope the campaign messaging conveys that sentiment effectively to the ones we’ve yet to reach, andassists the yet-to-be diagnosed locate help more easily.” 

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