Brands speak up for Mental Health Awareness Month

Less than half of modern youth in the U.S. (41% of Gen Zs and 34% of Gen Ys) think that there’s a stigma around talking about mental health issues today, as uncovered in our Generations Report. However, feeling more free to talk about such topics amongst themselves isn’t enough. Three-quarters of U.S. youth want to see more innovations to improve their mental health, and brands stepped up during May to stimulate conversation and provide solutions in recognition of Mental Health Awareness Month.


Burger King has previously offered consolation to employees stuck in the office while their coworkers are on vacation, and this month it’s catering to a whole host of emotions with its Real Meals. In concurrence with Mental Health Appreciation Month, the fast food chain is recognizing that it’s okay to not be happy all the time—while poking fun at its competitors’ kid’s meals—by offering meals to fit five different moods: Blue, Salty, Pissed, DGAF, and YAAAS. Burger King partnered with Mental Health America for the promotion, available at select locations in Austin, NYC, LA, Miami, and Seattle.


Modern youth are self-aware of the negative consequences of social media, and more than six in 10 (64%) have taken or are interested in taking a digital detox. Instagram tried to do its part by creating the “You’re All Caught Up!” feature so users are nudged to stop scrolling, and the social media giant collaborated with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention to launch the #RealConvo campaign for Mental Health Awareness Month. Along with promoting content from nine leaders, actors, activists, entrepreneurs, writers, the campaign encourages conversation around mental health and asks users to share their own experiences.


Walgreens is joining the number of companies requiring employees to undergo mental health training. It announced at the start of Mental Health Awareness Month that it is partnering with the National Council for Behavioral Health and the American Pharmacists Association to provide specialized mental health training to pharmacists. The Mental Health First Aid program will teach employees mental health literacy, understanding of risk factors, and how to spot warning signs and addiction concerns in customers. Staff will also learn strategies to deal with crisis and non-crisis situations.

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