Exhibit dispels mental illness stereotypes

From staff reports
Photos by Gigi Kaeser, courtesy of Family Diversity Projects, are on display in the “Nothing to Hide” photo-text exhibit at the Penn State Mont Alto Library. The exhibit aims to prevent prejudice and discrimination around mental health and mental illness.

“Nothing to Hide,” a touring photo-text exhibit that aims to prevent prejudice and discrimination around mental health and mental illness, will be on display at the Penn State Mont Alto Library, second floor, Sept. 4-30.

The “Nothing to Hide” exhibit is part of Family Diversity Projects IN OUR FAMILY: Portraits of All Kinds of Families. It features photographs by Gigi Kaeser and interviews edited by Rebekah Boyd and Peggy Gillespie.

The exhibit highlights families whose lives are affected by mental illnesses, including: schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, major depression, and anxiety disorders.

"We want to start a conversation both on campus and in the larger community about mental health concerns and the support services that are available,” said Kira Hamman, assistant teaching professor of mathematics and director of the Penn State Mont Alto Honors Program. “'Nothing to Hide’ will give students, faculty, staff and community members the opportunity to learn about mental health and to share their own experiences.”

The exhibit will open with a reception on Sept. 4 from noon to 3 p.m. The public is invited to attend the reception and view the exhibit free of charge throughout its duration.

The exhibit can be viewed during the library’s open hours, including: Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday, noon to 10 p.m.

Family Diversity Projects' award-winning, traveling photo-text exhibits help eliminate prejudice, stereotyping, bullying, and harassment of people who are discriminated against due to sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, race, national origin, religion, and disabilities of all kinds.

Funding for this project was provided by the Penn State Mont Alto Faculty Diversity Committee, Honors Program, Library, and Student Activity Fee Committee.

More information about IN OUR FAMILY and Family Diversity Projects is available at https://familydiv.org.