New Understanding, New Hope

In 2001, the World Health Organization (WHO) focus its effort on mental health. As a result, the theme for the World Health Report 2001 was entitled Mental Health : New Understanding, New Hope.

Click here for the World Mental Health Report Summary

Here is an excerpt from a poem by Damien Ah Sam which can be found in the report summary.

What do I know about a mentally ill person?

I don’t know what they’ve told you,
I don’t know what you’ve heard,
But if you care to hear my thoughts,
Please listen to these words.
I dream to bridge the distance,
And make ourselves aware,
That we must accept each other,
And erase these frosted stares.


If you feel your life is empty,
And that the sun won’t shine,
Think of those who have fallen ill,
In emotion and in mind.
Then look beyond their misfortune,
And love them for they’re worth,
A place in our empty hearts,
A place upon this earth.

By Damien Ah Sam, International Secondary School, Fiji
A national entry to to the Global School Contest on
Mental Health, World Health Day 2001, category 15-18 years:

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