Belief in mental health is growing. Our culture is embracing it. More people are asking for help. But there’s one conversation we’re still not prepared to have: suicide. Left unchecked, almost every mental illness can become fatal. But the stigmas in our society prevent us from even discussing it, let alone supporting the efforts to prevent it.


People believed mental health causes were important. Just not enough to support.

CAMH is a world-class hospital for mental health and addiction. Their research and treatments have changed and saved millions of lives for over a century. And despite their destructive or even fatal effects, mental health issues are clouded by misperception and prejudice, and remain low on our list of causes to support. So when CAMH launched their largest fundraising drive in history, the need for impact couldn’t be understated.


But at the heart of mental health is something we all care about.

People donate to what they care about. In health, people care about what affects them directly. So the impact CAMH needed would be found in the mental health issue that affects the most people: suicide. Suicide is the worst-case scenario of almost every mental illness if left untreated. It affects people of all ages and backgrounds, as approximately 11 Canadians die by suicide every day. And while this is certainly mental health’s most impactful story, the truth was even more powerful: suicide is preventable. Something can be done.


Not Suicide. Not Today.

Whether you’d lost someone to suicide, or feared that you would, “Not suicide. Not today.” gave Canadians a single, powerful reason to support mental health issues. It was a promise we could all make, to make today not the day we lose someone suicide.

The campaign was launched on World Suicide Prevention Day, as the Mayor of Toronto raised a “Not suicide. Not today.” flag at City Hall. Highly-visible media made this ‘unmentionable topic’ absolutely unignorable. Survivors openly shared their experiences, inspiring others to break their own silence. Statistics told the scale of the problem, and CAMH researchers shared the incredible research and treatments that were saving lives every day.


Breaking the silence delivered groundbreaking results.

CAMH needed to raise $240 million by 2023. This campaign raised more than half of that in six months. Online donations increased by 160% YOY in the first 30 days, and December was the biggest online donation month in the CAMH’s history. And the Public Health Agency of Canada committed support to CAMH and their partners for a nationally accessible three-digital suicide support line.

But the most important result — all the people who contacted CAMH to say that the Not suicide. Not today. campaign had pulled them out of darkness and saved their lives.