On February 15th, the World Trade and Convention Centre in Halifax played host to a medley of 1970s musical and comedic icons as they vied for the title of the Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia’s Aligned for Minds fundraising award.
Community leaders Carolyn Booth, Senior VP Atlantic, BMO Bank of Montreal; Robert Logan, Director, Business Partnerships, Halifax Metro Centre; Pete Luckett, Luckett Vineyards; Denyse Sibley, Host of FX101.9 Country Music Radio; Jim Spatz, Chairman & CEO, Southwest Properties; and Robert Zed (of ZedEvents) & the Men of the Deep Pockets, an over 70-member choir comprised of many well-known local professionals; performed for a sold-out crowd of over 500 guests.
Portraying characters ranging from Leonard Cohen to Dolly Parton, they wooed the crowd with carefully rehearsed vocals and choreography, all in the name of mental health advocacy and awareness. Leading up to the event, stars gathered fans and sponsors in an online fundraising competition, and throughout the night, rallied the crowd for further ‘vote’ donations.
The finale was made complete by a special guest appearance from Rita MacNeil, who surprised members of the hard-hat clad Men of the Deep Pockets onstage by joining in as they performed her classic, ‘Working Man.’ Rita’s vocals yielded an emotional closing to a fantastic night.
Through the generosity of all the 2013 A Different Stage of Mind grossed over $300,000, elevating the 10-year overall event total to over $2 million raised for mental health initiatives and support services across Nova Scotia. The Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia extends deepest gratitude to this year’s stars, sponsors, partners, and volunteers, with special thank you to BMO Bank of Montreal, our presenting sponsor. Together, we are changing the way people think about mental illness.
One in five Nova Scotians suffer from a mental illness. They are co-workers, neighbours, friends, and family members. The Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia believes that promoting awareness and understanding is the key to reducing stigma attached to mental illness and improving outreach and support. This event was able to shine a spotlight on mental illness, and in doing so, illuminate the lives of those who so often feel alone or in darkness.