John McCarthy was an ex-user of the Mental Health services in Ireland. His experiences as a patient within mental health institutions compelled him to bring to public attention the voice of those that are voiceless in our society.
John worked to reduce the great stigma attached to mental health issues. He worked to highlight the normality of madness and reduce the incidence of suicide by allowing people to express their feelings without fear and stigma – to make mental health a high profile public and political issue. He also worked to change the law regarding forced treatment for people in institutional care.
John sadly passed away in early 2012.
The initial project led to the development of madprideireland, who believe that the best way to promote understanding of the issues surrounding mental health is to engage the community through active participation in a fun environment. They organise numerous events and workshops throughout Ireland.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if our teenagers could say to their friends and relatives ‘I think I am getting depressed’ as simply as they can say I think I am getting a cold.
John F McCarthy