Stop the Stigma is an annual festival-like event that takes place every spring at Veterans Memorial park. These events allow us to address the problems of stigma in our community face-to-face in an environment that is fun and social. While these annual events are still the main project of Stop the Stigma, we don’t intend to stop there. Stopping the stigma will require creativity, passion, and vigilance.

Mental illness is often a topic that is not discussed because of the assumptions, fear, suspicion, and shame often associated with people who are suffering from mental illness. This burden of suspicion, fear, and shame is called “stigma.” This stigma puts an even greater burden on people who are already suffering, and can even create significant barriers to treatment and recovery.

Stop the Stigma is a movement aimed at ending stigma by showing the public what mental illness is (and what it isn’t), and by connecting those families affected by mental illness with the many options for help and support that are available in the Gainesville area. We hope that you’ll join us, not just in the park, but in this movement to Stop the Stigma.

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