Five strong and successful women were celebrated at the Power of Women Luncheon by Variety: Whoopi Goldberg, Lena Dunham, Kim Kardashian together with Glenn Close and Rachel Weisz. Each of the honourees shed light on a cause they had dedicated their lives to and used their fame to strengthen. With important and pressing issues like racism, sexual exploitation, and education, the one issue that desperately seeks attention is mental illness.
Despite living in the era of awareness, 21st century, there is an air of taboo and helplessness around mental illness. Close, six time Academy Award-nominated actress spoke against the stigmas associated with psychological conditions. With a sister suffering from bipolar disorder and a nephew diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder, Close is determined to find as much as she can about these conditions and urge families of similar sufferers to do the same.
The sheer intensity and raw emotion of Close’s speech brought the audience to tears as the brave lady shed light on her mom suffering from depression, who passed away a bare two months ago.
Hollywood has been shocked to its core by the recent suicides that claimed some of its most prized assets. The recent suicides of Sawyer Sweeten, Robin Williams, and Heath Ledger left millions of fans mourning.
"We have lost so many," Close said referring to the suicide of her friend Robin Williams, among many others.
More than just beautiful words and a beautiful face, the determined Close has created her own non-profit organization, Bring Change 2 Mind. More than anything else, Bring Change 2 Mind wants to clear out the fog of social stigmas surrounding mental illness.
"It's a chronic illness like anything else," Close said.
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