Many celebrities use their fame in order to advocate about prominent issues that many individuals face day to day in society. Such is the case with Grammy nominated singer and multi-platinum singer/songwriter Demi Lovato. The star is one of three people to be recognized at the UCLA Open Minds Gala on March 22 at the Beverly Hilton.
Hosted by Lisa Kudrow, the Open Minds Gala is an event that recognizes those who raise awareness and work to lessen the stigma of mental health issues. The singer will be honored with the Artistic Award of Courage at the gala after opening up to the world about her struggle with bipolar disorder.
The Disney star has previously advocated for mental health and been transparent with the media about her addictions, self-harming and eating disorders before checking into rehab in 2011.
In an interview with WomensHealthMag.com in 2015, Lovato emphasized the importance for people to speak up that are suffering. She said: ‘It’s possible to live well, feel well, and also find happiness with bipolar disorder or any other mental illness they’re struggling with.”
Lovato is now a spokesperson for Be Vocal: Speak Up for Mental Health, an initiative focused on encouraging those with mental illnesses to speak up and for people across the world to work to change the stigma of mental health. On the front page of the website for the ongoing campaign, Lovato is quoted saying this: “Over the years, I’ve had the opportunity to openly share my story with so many people, but it’s not just my story that deserves to be heard. Only by speaking up together can we advance mental health in America.”
The star now co-owns the treatment facility where she went to rehab, the Los Angeles’s CAST center. In addition to speaking out on mental illness in places like the Democratic National Convention, she has also written a New York Times best-seller Staying Strong: 365 Days a Year featuring inspirational quotes and life reflections.
Demi Lovato seems to be everywhere. She was not only nominated for her first Grammy this year for “Best Pop Vocal Album” for “Confident,” but she also got to perform at the show in the Bee Gees tribute with an iconic performance of “Staying Alive.” You can watch it here.
It is true: it is not about the destination, but rather, it is about the journey. In my opinion, Lovato is receiving the honor because of her incredible perseverance throughout her personal struggles and ability to speak out to individuals in the world that confront the same issues that she still deals with today.