Guest post from Crazywise co-director, Kevin Tomlinson:
One of the most audacious and exciting forms of treatment for mental illness is laughter. David Granirer of Vancouver B.C. who lives with depression, is a counselor, stand up comic, keynote speaker on mental health and author (The Happy Neurotic, How Fear and Angst Can Lead to Happiness and Success).
David founded “Stand Up for Mental Health“, an 8 week stand-up comedy program to people with mental illness as a way of building self-esteem and fighting public stigma. Trainings are held on Skype sessions until the end of the course when David travels to perform with the group, working with groups and organizations all across the U.S., Canada and Australia.
When we learned about “Stand Up for Mental Health“, we were immediately hooked by the transformation and empowerment his students showed after taking one of his workshops and performing in front of a live audience.
Funny enough, “We use comedy to give mental health consumers a powerful voice. The idea is that laughing at our setbacks raises us above them. It makes people go from despair to hope and that’s crucial to anyone struggling with adversity.”
We caught up with David in Tacoma, WA. training a group of sassy gals in preparation for their first performance in front of a live, sold out theater. The response was thunderous.