Letter From The President

The inspiration behind Mind The Bar Foundation originated from a Facebook post I wrote in January 2018 when I took the opportunity to honestly and openly address some of the struggles I’d had with mental health throughout my life and the self-destructive relationship I experienced with alcohol throughout my hospitality career. It was written with the simple hope of reminding those in my life, especially within the hospitality community, who may also be struggling that they were not alone, & to look for help wherever they might find it. And for those suffering to no longer remain silent, & to be receptive to those reaching out with a compassionate ear & open heart.

I never expected my story to resonate with so many, nor imagined that it would ultimately become the Mind The Bar Foundation. And yet here a simple honest Facebook post speaking up about my own battles with mental health has become a collective voice of so many. But Mind The Bar Foundation is so much more. It is the sum of countless hours invested by an ever-growing number of selfless individuals committed to a common goal. To end the stigma around mental health and substance disorders, to give others the courage to speak up about their own struggles, to establish better ways of accessing information & resources, & to create a healthier, more positive and supportive working environment for everyone within the hospitality industry as a whole.

While my ongoing battles with mental health continue still even today, Mind The Bar has allowed me the opportunity to meet incredible people whom I’m now honoured to call my friends & those I look to for support. It has introduced me to a new & greater understanding of my own mental health. It has taught me new techniques of coping with, if not overcoming, many of the issues I’ve struggled with my entire life. It gives me hope that Mind The Bar can help others, and change the way we perceive mental health and the many issues related to it, not only as a hospitality industry, but possibly the community as a whole.

Mind The Bar’s success will ultimately be measured in the continued & increased support of those who believe in it. If it emanated from a single voice, imagine what a thousand voices could do. So if you or someone you know has been affected by mental health or struggled with substance use, and have come here looking for support & information, to volunteer your time, or to simply make a donation towards our cause, I thank you. Because none of this is possible without you.

Shoel Davidson