Local fashion show serves as platform for mental health education

Hampden County

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Springfield’s Martin Luther King Junior Community Center hosted a fashion show designed to improve the neighborhood’s quality of life.

Families filled the hall for the “I am Bruised Fashion Show and Stop the Violence Dance” Sunday evening.

The audience had the option during gaps in the entertainment to visit booths dispensing mental health information.

I am Bruised organizer, Danamaree Brathwaite told 22News, the fashion show was designed to educate people on mental health and have a good time.

“We figured that everyone in the community goes out to parties. They want to have fun but when it comes to health education and resources about it, they don’t show up for these events,” Brathwaite said. “So we figured why not kind of fool them into coming and have a show with food and get the message across at the same time.”

Some members of the audience took advantage of the mental health information made available during the evening.

The president of the National Alliance for Mental Health, Neal Boyd, praised the organizers for merging a serious message with the evening’s entertainment.

“I like the term ‘I am Bruised.’ Because a lot of people have been bruised in a lot of ways but they don’t know what to do besides turning to drugs and alcohol,” Boyd told 22News. “They can get the help and know there is help out there for them.”

The I am Bruised Fashion Show, a unique blending of a night of entertainment with mental health service and awareness.

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