TORONTO (January 27, 2015) – Bell Media marks the fifth annual Bell Let’s Talk Day tomorrow (Wednesday, Jan. 28) with a full day of programming to help grow the conversation and raise awareness about mental health issues. Anchored by the debut of the original one-hour documentary CLARA’S BIG RIDE at 7 p.m. ET on CTV, CTV Two, and CTV GO (and available on-demand all day on CraveTV and CTV.ca), a day of special mental health-themed programming will air across Bell Media’s properties, including CTV, CTV Two, BNN, CP24, CTV News Channel, Discovery, E!, M3, Much, MTV, RDS, Space, TSN, CraveTV, and TheLoop.ca, as well as its additional digital, radio, and local TV platforms.“Bell Media is proud to support Bell Let’s Talk Day and engage Canadians in the important discussion about mental health,” said Kevin Crull, President, Bell Media. “It is a privilege to be able to provide programming that challenges people’s perceptions about mental illness and demonstrates to those who struggle that they are not alone.” CANADA AM begins the day with a discussion about eradicating the stigma surrounding mental illness and features powerful stories, from mental health inside the military to parenting the mentally ill child. On CTV News Channel’s POWER PLAY, host Don Martin speaks to Minister of Health Rona Ambrose and several MPs about how they have been coping in the months since the attack on Parliament Hill. On CTV, THE MARILYN DENIS SHOW and THE SOCIAL each dedicate a full hour to various mental health-themed topics, while on the half-hour special ETALK PRESENTS: BELL LET’S TALK 2015, celebrities share their personal experiences with mental illness. The day’s flagship program, CLARA’S BIG RIDE, chronicles the inspiring and emotional 110-day cycling journey across Canada by six-time Olympic medallist and long-time Bell Let’s Talk spokesperson Clara Hughes. Throughout the journey, Hughes spreads a hopeful message designed to break the silence surrounding mental illness and help create a stigma-free Canada. Crossing every region of the country, the documentary also features brave stories from Canadians whose lives are touched by Hughes’ historic ride. Following Bell Let’s Talk Day, CTV’s W5 goes behind-the-scenes for a profile on TV personality Howie Mandel for a candid interview about the mental health challenges he has faced, airing this Saturday, Jan. 31, Additionally, Bell Media’s radio outlets and local CTV News broadcasts across Canada will engage their communities by examining mental health issues from a local perspective. Three new Bell Let’s Talk spokespeople – TV personality Howie Mandel, TSN host Michael Landsberg, and comedian Mary Walsh – and returning ambassadors Olympian Clara Hughes, musician Stefie Shock, and comedian Michel Mpambara are just some of the personalities lending their support to this day of special programming. On Bell Let’s Talk Day, Bell will contribute five cents to mental health initiatives for every text message sent, and every mobile and long distance call made by Bell Canada and Bell Aliant customers, every Tweet using the #BellLetsTalk hashtag, and every Facebook share of the Bell Let’s Talk image. Highlights of Bell Media’s special programming in support of Bell Let’s Talk Day include: Bell Let’s Talk Day – Wednesday, Jan. 28
CANADA AM (CTV and CTV GO) – Beginning at 6 a.m. ET Bell Media’s Let’s Talk programming begins at 6 a.m. ET with Bell Canada Mental Health and Anti-Stigma Research chair Dr. Heather Stuart discussing efforts to eradicate the stigma around mental illness. An interview with Dr. David Goldbloom, chair of the Mental Health Commission of Canada, follows, before the program explores post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and investigates the difficulties involved in parenting mental illness. CANADA AM co-host Marci Ien interviews Howie Mandel, who shares his experience with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD).BNN – Beginning at 7:45 a.m. ET BNN’s coverage begins at 7:45 a.m. ET with Dr. David Goldbloom, chair of the Mental Health Commission of Canada, who will provide an overview of mental health issues in Canada and their impact on the workforce. At 11 a.m. ET, a panel including Dr. Kellie Leitch, Minister of Labour and Minister of Status of Women, and Mental Health advocate Mark Henick will explore the costs of mental health and related policies from both a government and corporate perspective. Later in the day at 3:10 p.m. ET, BNN will feature an interview with TSN’s Michael Landsberg, sharing his experience with depression. CTV News Channel – Beginning at 9 a.m. ET CTV News Channel has an array of interviews scheduled throughout the day with mental health experts and Bell Let’s Talk Day ambassadors. CTV News’ Health and Medical Expert Dr. Marla Shapiro will also be in-studio to speak about the impact of mental health issues. CTV News anchor Graham Richardson moderates a panel at National Defence Headquarters on mental health in the Canadian military. On POWER PLAY at 5 p.m. ET, Don Martin speaks to Minister of Health Rona Ambrose about the shooting on Parliament Hill in October, and to MPs whose mental health was affected by the incident. CP24 – Beginning at 9 a.m. ET CP24 marks Bell Let’s Talk Day with a full day of interviews covering a variety of mental health topics. Mary Deacon, Chair, Bell Let’s Talk, starts off the coverage, stopping by to discuss the Bell Let’s Talk Day campaign. At regular intervals throughout the day, CP24 will feature interviews with experts and people with lived experiences, outlining the challenges, journeys, efforts, advancements, and advice surrounding mental health issues. Featured interviews include Toronto Mayor John Tory, explaining how the city handles mental health issues for homeless people and city workers, and Chief Warrant Officer Kevin West outlines recent challenges faced by members of the Canadian Armed Forces – including the recent tragedies in Ottawa and Quebec – and how they are equipped to handle issues. Toronto Police Association president Mike McCormack provides insight into how officers are prepared to manage their personal mental health and the mental health of others when responding to calls. Award-winning filmmaker Larry Weinstein discusses his work directing the CLARA’S BIG RIDE documentary, and Bell Let’s Talk Day spokesperson and comedian Mary Walsh discusses her battles with alcohol and the impact it has had on her life. TSN’s Michael Landsberg will discuss his battle with depression. April Reimer, wife of Maple Leafs goalie James Reimer, discusses cyber-bullying, and Toronto District School Board chair Shaun Chen highlights the board’s mental health strategy and details the support offered to bullied students. DARKNESS AND HOPE: DEPRESSION, SPORTS, AND ME (CTV Two and CTV GO) – 9 a.m. ET (also airs at 8 p.m. ET on TSN) An encore presentation of TSN host Michael Landsberg’s Canadian Screen Award-nominated documentary about sports and depression. THE MARILYN DENIS SHOW (CTV and CTV GO) – 10 a.m. ET (also airs at 11 a.m. ET on CTV Two and CTV GO) Clara Hughes kicks off this special mental health-themed episode with a discussion about the Bell Let’s Talk campaign and the CLARA’S BIG RIDE documentary. Marilyn Denis then sits down for an interview with Dr. Brett Belchetz about the latest news in brain research and mental health, as well as when to seek help and the newest medication options. Family therapist Joe Rich closes the program with a conversation about depression and the support systems available to caregivers. THE SOCIAL (CTV and CTV GO) – 1 p.m. ET (also airs at 2 p.m. ET on CTV Two and CTV GO) In anticipation of the new CTV documentary CLARA’S BIG RIDE, director Larry Weinstein and participant Dexter Nyuurnibe join THE SOCIAL hosts to discuss Dexter’s cultural struggle as an African Canadian battling a mental illness, and why their documentary is a big step towards starting the conversation. Then the conversation continues with Dr. Marshall Korenblum, psychiatrist-in-chief at The Hincks-Dellcrest Centre, and his 17-year-old patient Hailey, who shares her story to help advocate for services for vulnerable youth. The episode closes with social media messages from viewers whose lives have been touched by mental health issues, and about what the Bell Let’s Talk initiative means to them. E!, M3, and Much – Beginning at 3 p.m. ET In short segments airing throughout the day, Chloe Wilde chats with Clara Hughes about the various Bell Let’s Talk Day initiatives. SPORTS 30 MAGAZINE (RDS) – 4 p.m. ET Olympic track and field athlete Alex Genest talks about the mental health challenges he has faced during his career. TALK TO ME: THE STORY OF JAMES PATRICK PEEK (CTV Two and CTV GO) – 4 p.m. ET (also airs at 9 p.m. ET on TSN) An encore presentation of the emotional documentary produced in support of the 2013 Bell Let’s Talk Day. Gemini Award-winning TSN field producer Mike Farrell sits down with his best friend’s family to talk about the loss of their son and brother to suicide, and how sport helped them cope and inspire change in their community. OFF THE RECORD WITH MICHAEL LANDSBERG (TSN1 and TSN4) – 5 p.m. ET (also airs at 5:30 p.m. on TSN3, 7 p.m. ET on TSN1, and 11:30 p.m. ET on TSN2) Long-time mental health advocate Michael Landsberg hosts a special edition of his popular talk show that focuses on mental health in the workplace in relation to the world of sports. Landsberg has an open dialogue about depression and mental health with Toronto Raptors coach Dwane Casey and Team Canada men’s hockey coach Mike Babcock, as well as with former Detroit Red Wings forward Darren McCarty and Toronto Raptors centre Greg Stiemsma, who share about their struggles with depression. LE 5 À 7 (RDS) – 5 p.m. ET Olympic track and field athlete Alex Genest talks about the mental health challenges he has faced during his career. ETALK PRESENTS: BELL LET’S TALK 2015 (CTV and CTV GO) – 5:30 p.m. ET (also airs at 4:30 p.m. ET on CTV Two and CTV GO and 6:30 p.m. ET on E!; also available on-demand at CTV.ca) This half-hour special features celebrities discussing their personal experiences with mental illness and includes a look back at the late Robin Williams’ battle with depression. Those interviewed include TV personality Howie Mandel, comedian Mary Walsh, actress/author Lena Dunham, former competitive figure skater Elizabeth Manley, actor Taylor Kitsch, actress/author Andrea Martin, musician Raine Maida, actress/author Mariel Hemingway, former boxer Mike Tyson, and more. Encore presentation – premiered January 24. INNERSPACE (Space) – 6 p.m. ET The episode includes a segment with Dr. David Goldbloom, chair of the Mental Health Commission of Canada, exploring the link between mental illness and creativity. CLARA’S BIG RIDE (CTV, CTV Two, and CTV GO) – 7 p.m. ET (also airs at 12 midnight ET on TSN2, and available on-demand beginning at 9 a.m. ET on CraveTV and CTV.ca) This original one-hour documentary chronicles Clara Hughes’ epic 110-day cycling journey through 105 communities across Canada. Directed by award-winning filmmaker Larry Weinstein (Thirty-Two Short Films About Glenn Gould, Our Man in Tehran, TSN’s The 13th Man), the film includes highlights from many of the 235 event Hughes participated in during her 11,000 km journey and features young people across the country sharing their stories of living with mental illness. DAILY PLANET (Discovery) – 7 p.m. ET DAILY PLANET explores an emerging technology in the treatment of depression, representing one of the most significant innovations in neuropsychiatry of the last 50 years. The program looks at how Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS) changed one patient’s life, allowing her decades-long chronic depression to lift and reveal what she’d been missing out on her whole life: clear thoughts, optimism, and the ability to feel gratitude. Dr. Daniel Blumberger at CAMH demonstrates this powerful, non-invasive treatment, where he holds the small plastic device close to the patient’s head. It shoots tiny electrical pulses through the skull to precise parts of the brain, reprogramming neurons that might be misfiring and allowing them to resolve the chaos and confusion on a cellular level. MTV – Beginning at 8 p.m. ET MTV airs four back-to-back episodes from Season 12 of DEGRASSI, each focusing on teens and mental health issues. L’ANTICHAMBRE (RDS) – 9:30 p.m. ET Former Montréal Alouettes player Étienne Boulay talks about his personal struggle with a series of concussions sustained during his playing career. Thursday, Jan. 29 DAILY PLANET (Discovery) – 7 p.m. ET This episode features a profile on the Bell Douglas Brain Bank in Montréal, home to revolutionary brain research and a recipient of funds raised through the Bell Let’s Talk initiative. Here, Dr. Gustavo Turecki and his team of epigeneticists investigate depression and suicide to better understand the characteristics of affected individuals. Some of their recent findings include the discovery that when children suffer extraordinary trauma in childhood, scarring is left on certain genes, and those people have a higher risk of depression and suicide as adults, and that a tiny molecule in the blood could predict how well a person will respond to anti-depressants, which could one day lead to a blood test that pinpoints how well various anti-depressants will work on a particular individual. Saturday, Jan. 31 W5 (CTV) – 7 p.m. ET (also airs Sunday, Feb. 1 at 7 p.m. ET on CTV Two) W5 goes behind-the-scenes for a profile of TV personality and Bell Let’s Talk spokesperson Howie Mandel. With exclusive access, W5 follows Mandel at his Los Angeles office and on-stage in Scottsdale, Arizona for a candid discussion about comedy and his experience with mental health issues. DIGITAL CLARA’S BIG RIDE (CraveTV and CTV.ca) – On-demand beginning Wednesday, Jan. 28 at 9 a.m. ET See description above. TheLoop.ca features a variety of mental health-related content in support of Bell Let’s Talk Day, including an article detailing the inspiring story of a woman whose own battle with depression led her to start a global organization that sends letters of support to people in need, an animated video examining the science of seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and its treatment in layman’s terms, and a photo gallery of celebrities who have experienced mental health issues first-hand. Sympatico.ca contains a range of mental health-related content, including the Top 10 anti-stress tips from Canal Vie and Rouge FM’s Marina Orsini and NRJ’s Anais Favron, a photo gallery of celebrities in Québec and Canada who have struggled with mental health issues, and a video featuring a behind-the-scenes look at the Bell Let’s Talk campaign. Content on MTV.ca includes five ways to end the stigma surrounding mental illness, while Much.ca offers suggestions on small acts of kindness that anyone can do, and shares quotes and tweets from celebrities who have opened up about their own mental health issues. Both Eonline.ca and M3tv.ca feature interviews with Clara Hughes. TSN.ca will feature on-demand viewing of DARKNESS AND HOPE and TALK TO ME, along with a series of mental health-related articles from around the world of sport, while RDS.ca will feature two mental health articles, including one written by sports psychology writer Dr. Sylvain Guimond. Space.ca breaks down all the struggles superheroes might face and TheComedyNetwork.ca features an interview with comedian Kevin Breel about the prevalence of mental illness in the comedy community. Vrak.tv will include a video of VRAK.TV personality Marie-Soleil Dion speaking to young people about the difficulties she faced in Grade 11 and how she persevered. On Canalvie.com three videos will be featured: Kathleen Dugas, one of the Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health’s Faces of Mental Illness, describing her experience being bipolar and sharing how she maintains a balanced life, psychologist Luc Legris offering his suggestions on how to remove the stigma surrounding mental health, and psychiatrist Dr. Luigi De Benedictis describing the symptoms of psychosis. Viewers can also access several special Bell Let’s Talk Day programs on-demand at CTV.ca and CTV GO, including CLARA’S BIG RIDE and ETALK PRESENTS: BELL LET’S TALK 2015. Interviews conducted throughout the day can also be found on CTVNews.ca/letstalk, CP24.com/letstalk, and BNN.ca. About the Bell Let’s Talk Mental Health Initiative Bell Let’s Talk promotes mental health based on four action pillars – anti-stigma, care and access, research, and workplace best practices. The initiative supports mental health leaders across the country including the Royal Ottawa Hospital, Institut universitaire en santé mentale de Montréal, Hôpital Charles-LeMoyne, Montreal Jewish Hospital, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), the University of British Columbia, the Douglas Mental Health University Institute, Queen’s University, La Fondation du Centre hospitalier universitaire de Québec, Concordia University, Brain Canada, Kids Help Phone, Sunnybrook Hospital and Université Laval Foundation. The annual Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund supports front-line mental health organizations in every region of the country. The Fund has provided grants of $5,000 to $50,000 to hundreds of community organizations focused on improving access to programs and services that support people living with mental health issues. To learn more about the Bell Let’s Talk campaign, and to download the Bell Let’s Talk toolkit to help get the conversation started, please visit Bell.ca/LetsTalk.