2022 Mrs. Alaska Fabulous Face advocates for mental health and soldier suicide awareness
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - “I said, ‘I have something I want to say, what do I do?’ I never anticipated winning; I really just wanted to get out there, connect, network and learn how I could better advocate for my platform.”
Those were the thoughts shared with us by Fairbanks’ most recently crowned 2022 Mrs. Alaska Fabulous Face, Victoria Cason, who is using her newfound title and platform to advocate for mental health awareness and preventing soldier suicide.
To explain why this non-profit was what she chose to focus in on, Cason said, “We lived on a very small base in South Korea that was locked down. We were unable to leave for months at a time and I had a young daughter. I mean I felt isolated, I felt alone, and I remember thinking if I feel this alone with my family here, how are these soldiers feeling that don’t have support, that don’t have anyone here to advocate for them? It kind of just went full circle for me that I wanted to do something to help.”
Cason is a healthcare worker and military spouse who says she’s seen the repercussions of shoving the topic of mental health issues under the rug.
“During the pandemic I saw a dramatic impact of mental health in service members that wasn’t being advocated for or treated,” she said, “and I realized a lot of it came down to the taboo that still exists on that treatment.”
After receiving the title at the beginning of May, Cason pledged to “hit the ground running” with her newfound platform and ability to make change happen.
The pageant queen said, “I found that facilitating a normal discussion was making a big improvement, and them seeking treatment and help... and so I’ve decided to continue that.”
Moving forward, her plan is to continue working with Behavioral Health and Military Family Life Counseling Services to advocate for and normalize mental health awareness and treatment.
Cason said, “I want to educate as many people on the resources they have on post and off- to advocate for themselves and facilitate normal conversation about mental health.”
For now, Cason is preparing to speak at the annual “Out of the Darkness Walk” in support of mental health awareness. That event takes place June 4th.
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