Later this week, a community dialogue in seven cities across the state will explore how mental health issues are affecting Arizona.

The event, “Healthy Communities: Focus on Mental Health,” will bring together community members and mental health experts to address questions and raise awareness about mental health.

Project Civil Discourse, a statewide collaborative dedicated to civic engagement, is organizing the dialogue, which aims to answer President Barack Obama’s call earlier this year for a national conversation about mental health.

“We thought this would be a great way for us to facilitate Arizonans’ voices being included in that national discussion,” said Jane Prescott-Smith, the managing director of the National Institute for Civil Discourse and an organizer of the event.

The conversation is free and open to the public, but registering online is encouraged. Participants will hear from a panel of experts who will answer questions and provide legal, advocacy and health care provider perspectives on mental health. Facilitated discussions about community mental health concerns will follow.

Six other cities—Flagstaff, Bullhead City, Sedona, Phoenix, Tempe and Yuma—will host their own public conversations simultaneously, and all cities will be able to share their findings after the event.

The Tucson conversation will take place Wednesday, Sept. 25, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., in the Amethyst Room of the Pima Community College Downtown Campus, located at 1255 N. Stone Avenue. Doors will open at 5:30 p.m. and refreshments will be available before the meeting.