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Prince Harry raising awareness for invisible injuries through the Invictus games
It was hard to miss the Invictus Games last week.
Prince Harry, the brain child behind the games, has been promoting the second incarnation of the game which were held in Orlando, Florida, last week, following the inaugural games held in London in 2014.
The Invictus Games are an international Paralympic-style multi-sport event in which wounded, injured or sick armed services personnel and their associated veterans take part in sports including wheelchair basketball, sitting volleyball, and indoor rowing.
The former president’s wife, Laura Bush, opened a day long symposium on invisible wounds the day before the games. Both Prince Harry and George Bush spoke on a panel during the day. They called for an end to the stigma for veterans who suffer from mental health issues such as PTSD and other invisible wounds such as brain injuries.
The games’ first edition in London ‘smashed the sigma around physical wounds’, Harry said. He hopes this year’s competition will do the same for invisible injuries.
‘I’ve spoken to everybody who has severe PTSD to minor depression, anxiety – whatever it might be,’ he added.
‘Everybody says the same thing: If you can deal with it soon enough, if you can deal with it quick enough, and have the ability and the platform to speak about it openly, then you can fix these problems.’
‘And if you can’t fix it, you can at least find coping mechanisms. There’s no reason people should be hiding in shame after they’ve served their country.’
He added: “To those of you watching at home and who are suffering from mental illness in silence – whether a veteran or a civilian, a mum or a dad, a teenager or a grandparent – I hope you see the bravery of our Invictus champions who have confronted invisible injuries and I hope you are inspired to ask for the help that you need.”
Lance Corporal John-James Chalmers said, “The success of these games is to see the leaps and bounds we have taken for physical disability, not just for the military world but Civilian Street as well, I want to see that for mental health.
As a firm who specialises in brain injuries and associated psychological issues of suffering injuries such as this we are encouraged to see this issue receiving such a high profile at the games and applaud the approach Prince Harry has taken.
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