Press Release

Ministry of Health & Social Development
Release Date:
Tuesday, 8 October 2019 - 4:46pm

The BVI Health Services Authority has joined forces with local telecommunications providers to execute the Golden Hat Hunt as part of World Mental Health Day activities on Thursday October 10.

Director of Community Mental Health Dr. Virginia Rubaine said the authority has partnered with FLOW, Digicel and CCT to disseminate texts with clues to the location of the Golden Hat which will be hidden in the Road Town area.

“Once found, the lucky person should return the Golden Hat to the offices of Community Mental Health located in the Major Peebles Wing of the hospital.  Only persons wearing a silly hat can redeem the prize,” Dr. Rubaine explained.

The director said the purpose of the activity is to build awareness of suicide prevention.  “Our slogan this year is “Think and talk before you tip your hat” because we want people to be more vocal about their mental health issues and we want them to put their thinking caps on to find more positive ways to resolve life’s issues,” she added.

Residents are also invited to support Mental Health Day activities by wearing silly hats and participating in the Golden Hat Hunt.

World Mental Health Day will be observed on October 10 under the theme ‘Suicide Prevention’. Suicide warning signs include talking, thinking, reading, or writing about suicide. Other signs include verbal expressions of feeling worthless or hopeless, losing interest in activities, using or increasing the use of drugs or alcohol or any changes from typical behaviors such as having problems at school or work and not wanting to go out with friends.

Persons who suspect a family member or friend may be considering suicide, be honest and express your concerns to them.  Listen and offer support, ask direct questions about thoughts of suicide and believe them if they express that they are thinking about harming themselves.

Seek help by contacting Community Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services located in the Major Peebles Wing of the Dr. D. Orlando Smith Hospital at 852-7670 and offer to accompany them to seek help.

The community is urged to support mental health awareness by using the following hash tags. #BVI2019WORLDMENTALHEALTHDAY and #BVISILLYHATSUICIDEAWARENESS

The BVI Health Services Authority is committed to delivering excellent, compassionate, client centered healthcare across the Territory.


Natasha Lettsome-Humphrey

Public Health Communications Specialist
Ministry of Health/Social Development
Telephone: 468-2286