As mental health awareness week draws to a close, it’s vital that we all carry on talking. It’s fantastic that attention is drawn so publicly to the mental health issues that are so prevalent through this week long initiative, but raising awareness mustn’t stop now.
We now need to build upon the additional awareness and education the last week has provided and continue to speak out loud.
Looking back over the last week, there have been some amazingly inspirational stories, which, whilst tragic, provide us with hope. Take the news report on Sky recently, which covered the attempted suicide of a young woman on a railway in China. She was saved by the quick thinking of a rail employee who intervened with seconds to spare. Click here to see the clip.
It’s also inspiring to see the support large organisations and professional bodies are lending to mental health campaigns, not just over the last week but on an ongoing basis. We were interested to read about the WPBSA and how it has supported the mental health awareness week campaign.
The following extract is taken from the WPBSA’s website – do visit to read the full article which includes moving and inspiring personal stories.
“In March 2017 the Mental Health Charter for Sport and Recreation celebrated its second anniversary at the London Aquatics Centre at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. The Charter was established by the Sport and Recreation Alliance and Professional Players Federation, with support from the mental health charity Mind, and sets out how sport can use its collective power to tackle mental ill health and the stigma that surrounds it.
The WPBSA is one of over 250 signatories to the Charter and was represented on the day by current world number 89 Mitchell Mann, who earlier this year was part of the new ‘Your Cue to Talk’ campaign, as the WPBSA looks to raise awareness of the support available to professional snooker players.”
One of the most compelling sites we’ve come across over the last week, featuring the story of Naomi, who suffers from dyspraxia and ADHD, is Access Sport . Their website describes how they work with disadvantage children to “enhance life prospects by providing opportunities to experience and enjoy the power of sport.” If you’ve never heard of them or read about the support they give, then do take a look at their site.
It’s always heartening when public figures step up and speak out in support of mental health campaigns, encouraging others to start talking and help lessen the stigma. Last week saw two prominent Hull born figures join forces to speak out about mental health – former Apprentice winner Michelle Dewberry and ex footballer Dean Windass joined forces at Hull City’s KCOM stadium to discuss their own experiences of mental health and the need for people to take the first step and speak out.
There has been much activity in the past week and every single action, every word, every story will add strength to the collective ambition to eradicate stigma and banish the silence.
It’s time to stop the silence