Bell Aliant customers, partners, employees, families and friends came together and have set a new Guinness World Records title for the Most people sending a text message simultaneously in support of mental health on Bell Let’s Talk Day. More than 1,072 people turned out at the Halifax Metro Centre, joined by CTV personality Seamus O’Regan. The previous record of 677, set on May 18, 2011, was held by Pine View High School students in Utah as part of a driving and texting awareness campaign.
“The show of support for mental health here yesterday was tremendous,” said Dan McKeen, Senior Vice President, Customer Solutions. “Setting a new Guinness World Records title is not something you get to take part in every day, and the additional money raised and support provided to Canadians suffering with mental illness made everyone very proud – it was amazing to be a part of it.”
Yesterday, across the country 9,266,266 calls, texts, tweets and Facebook shares were made across the country. At 5¢ each, Bell is donating a total of $4,813,313.30 to mental health programs.
In 2012, 8 million Canadians answered the call with more than 78 million text messages and long distance calls on Bell Let’s Talk Day, resulting in over $3.9 million donated to mental health initiatives across the country.
The Bell Let’s Talk mental health initiative is a multi-year, $50-million charitable program based on four action pillars: anti-stigma, care and access, research, and workplace best practices. With Bell Let’s Talk Day as its anti-stigma centrepiece, the initiative is providing significant funding for leading mental health hospitals and grassroots organizations, driving new workplace initiatives across corporate Canada, and supporting new research.
Mental health is a focus of Bell Aliant’s community program. Since 2011, Bell Aliant has given more than $1 million to support local programs that reduce stigma, and increase access to care, such as Dots NB; Laing House, NS; Health PEI and Eating Disorder Foundation of Newfoundland & Labrador.