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Pictou County Road to Recovery Walk raises money for local program

Participants with the Pictou County Road to Recovery Walk for Mental Health leave Carmichael Park on Saturday.
Participants with the Pictou County Road to Recovery Walk for Mental Health leave Carmichael Park on Saturday.

NEW GLASGOW - The number of participants was down slightly from last year, but Cecilia McRae wasn’t complaining.

Roughly 30 people showed up for the annual Pictou County Road to Recovery Walk for Mental Health on Saturday, which saw the walkers leave Carmichael Park and walk across the George Street Bridge and over to New Glasgow’s east side, before returning for a barbecue.

“We’re down a little bit, but that’s okay,” said McRae, president of the Pictou County Mental Illness Family Support Group.

While the final numbers hadn’t been tabulated as of Saturday afternoon, McRae estimated $3,000 to $4,000 was raised.

She said the money will be used for the Bright Smiles program, which gives people living with mental illness the opportunity to get dental check-ups and treatment when it is required.

“All the money we raised comes back here,” stated McRae, whose organization operates on a strictly volunteer basis.

“That’s about the same as last year (but) we don’t worry about numbers. We’re about stigma reduction.”

She said it is encouraging that in the past decade or so, mental illnesses are no longer being swept under the rug as they once may have been.

“It’s okay to get help; it’s okay to talk about it,” she said. “There’s been a big change, and it is wonderful because it allows people to talk about these things.”

Like many mental health advocates, McRae would like to see improved services and programs for those dealing with mental illnesses.

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