GreenShield teams up with famed broadcaster Michael Landsberg on mental health program

It aims to shake up the mental health conversation

GreenShield teams up with famed broadcaster Michael Landsberg on mental health program

Life & Health

By Mika Pangilinan

Health and benefits provider GreenShield has partnered with famed broadcaster Michael Landsberg to help destigmatize mental health conversations.

The partnership introduces the First Step program, a monthly 60-minute entertainment platform available exclusively through GreenShield. The program will be hosted by Landsberg and feature interviews with guests who will share “unfiltered conversations never before seen in the mental health space,” GreenShield said.

A news release described the program as “the antithesis of traditional corporate mental health speak, delving into topics selected from real life experiences versus medical text.”

“The first time I knew Canadians needed a program like First Step was in 2009 when I initially shared my battle with severe depression and anxiety on national television,” said Landsberg.

“I was immediately struck by the overwhelming response, specifically the level of loneliness people felt. Since then, we've made a lot of strides as a society, but we've failed to reduce the stigma around mental health.”

GreenShield will also publish a series of digital modules that clients will work on alongside Landsberg as part of the initiative. These modules will debunk myths and dispel misconceptions surrounding mental health.

“We speak the way Canadians talk - not corporate or clinical, but real and relatable,” Landsberg added, explaining that the programming will be infused with “comedy and catharsis.”

Aside from hosting the First Step program, Landsberg will serve as GreenShield’s national mental health ambassador.

“Unfortunately, mental health issues remain shrouded in stigma, falsehoods and misconceptions,” said Joe Blomeley, executive vice president and head of GreenShield health and enterprise growth.”

“Discussions around mental health tend to be overly clinical and, at times, inaccessible to the average Canadian – dissuading people from seeking help. Our partnership with Michael will unlock mental health topics in a way that's never been done before with the hope that we can shed the stigma once and for all.”

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