Its Time to Talk about mental health

Liverpool Community Health (LCH) NHS Trust, Liverpool City Council, Merseyrail, Everton FC, Everton in the Community, and Liverpools Time to Change Hub Champions are partnering to support a week of health events to coincide with Time to Talk Day on Thursday 4th February.

Time to Talk Day is a national awareness day, which aims to reduce stigma and challenge prejudice around mental health problems.

Throughout this week, there will be a range of activities and events happening all over Liverpool to help improve awareness of mental health issues and encourage people to getting talking more about mental health.

On Monday 1st February, the week is kicking off with Don’t be DownBeat – Be Upbeat. Taking place at The Casa on Hope Street, this all day event includes a range of arts workshops for individuals living with or recovering from mental health issues, including songwriting, spoken word, stand up comedy, and music sessions, each led by staff from Imagine Mental Health, Richmond Fellowship and Liverpool’s Time To Change Champions.

In the evening, some of the participants from this event will also take to the stage at 7.30pm as part of a one-off performance, which aims to challenge the stigma surrounding mental health. This evening performance is open to all members of the public, and free to attend.

On Tuesday 2nd February, there will be a drop-in coffee morning taking place at the Kumbi Amani Centre in Toxteth between 11am-1pm, supported by Mary Secole House to highlight the importance of talking as a way to improve mental health. The LCH social inclusion team will also be hosting a knit and chat session with deaf and hard of hearing communities.

On Wednesday 3rd February, The Time to Change Champions will be partnering with Everton in the Community during the Everton v Newcastle match, to raise awareness of Time to Talk Day and the importance of ending discrimination against those living with mental health problems.

Time to Talk Champions will be at the stadium on match night to talk to fans, and branded banners will adorn the stadium to help promote the message to 35,000 fans. Before the match, Everton players will also be wearing tshirts to help highlight the message prior to kick off as well.

On Thursday 4th February, the team will be at Liverpool’s Central Station between 11am-3pm giving out free information and advice about mental health to rail passengers and commuters throughout the day, and can help signpost people to further advice and support if needed.

In the evening, between 5pm – 8pm, there will also be a Time to Talk stall at the FACT Centre, providing information and advice to those attending its galleries, cinemas, cafe and bar.

On Friday 5th February, there will be a series of free performances taking place at the Everyman Theatre, written and performed by people living with experience of mental health problems about the subject, supported by PSS and Time to Talk Volunteers. Health advisors will also be next door in the Bistro between 1pm-6pm to provide further information and an opportunity to chat.

Finally, on Friday 12th February, the Time to Talk Champions will be at Speke Retail Park between 1pm -5pm with a marquee, offering information and advice on mental health issues to shoppers.

People are also being encouraged to join an online conversation on the subject of mental health on twitter using the hashtag #TimetoTalk

Paul White, Mental Health Lead for Liverpool Community Health NHS Trust and Coordinator of Liverpool’s Time to Change Hub said:

“Mental health problems affect 1 in 4 people every year, yet too often people are afraid to talk about their experiences because they fear it will affect their jobs or relationships. Time to Talk Day is all about breaking that silence, normalising talking about mental health, and encouraging people to feel comfortable to talk about how they are feeling with others.

“If you are at all concerned about your own mental health, or on behalf of a family member, work colleague or friend, please don’t suffer in silence. Come along to one of our event and chat to a professional to get some free, confidential and non-judgemental help and advice.”

Some of the most commonly experienced mental health problems in the UK include conditions such as stress, depression, anxiety, panic attacks, stress and phobias.

The good news is that with support from local mental health services, about half of those diagnosed with a mental health condition, will have made a full recovery within 18 months.

For more information on local mental health services, activities and tips to support mental health and wellbeing, please contact: www.wellbeingliverpool.co.uk

You can also visit: www.time-to-change.org.uk/timetotalkday

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