Staff from ²gether NHS Foundation Trust will be hitting the road to mark Mental Health Awareness Week (May 13 to 19).
The theme for the week this year is physical activity, and ²gether is working with organisations including Active Gloucestershire and local authorities to promote the benefits being physically active can have on mental health and wellbeing.
The ²gether Roadshow will visit five locations during the week – Coleford, Stroud, Hereford, Gloucester and Cheltenham – to promote the facts about mental illness and the services available for those struggling with mental health issues.
Dr Jane Melton, ²gether’s Clinical Director for Social Inclusion, said: “Mental Health Awareness Week, which is run by the Mental Health Foundation, is an opportunity for us to get out and about to spread the word about mental health and wellbeing.
“Each year one in four of us will suffer a common mental health condition, such as depression or anxiety. It’s important to know that there is help available and there are also ways in which we can help ourselves, including by being more physically active.
“Not everyone will want to take up competitive sport or run a marathon, but by building a small amount of activity into our routine every day, perhaps by walking or gardening, we can all do a great deal to lift our mood prevent or overcome common mental health problems.
“We’re looking forward to meeting people during our week on the road, and we and Active Gloucestershire have got activities, competitions, giveaways and information to share. I’d encourage everyone to come along and see us.”
John Stevens, Chief Executive of Active Gloucestershire, said: “Active Gloucestershire’s aim is to get more people being more active and more often. This extends to all individuals whatever their circumstances which is why we are pleased to be supporting 2Gether NHS Foundation Trust during Mental Health Awareness Week.
“This year it is estimated that one-in-four of us in the United Kingdom will be affected by a mental health problem. Regular participation in physical activity and sport can promote mental well-being and enrich the lives of people experiencing mental health problems. There are many benefits of doing so including less tension, stress and mental fatigue; improved sleep and a healthy appetite; having fun and a better social life; less anger or frustration; developing a focus and sense of purpose and gaining a sense of achievement”.
Dr Sola Aruna, Consultant in Public Health and lead for Public Mental Health at Gloucestershire County Council, said: “When people are suffering with a mental health issue, they often feel alone, but it is more common than people think with around one in four of us likely to have problems with our mental and emotional wellbeing at some point in our lives.
“If you’re feeling stressed, anxious or depressed; you’re not alone but we do understand it may be difficult to talk about. These road shows will be attended by people who will be able to help and offer advice that you may find life changing.”
The roadshow will be out between 11am and 2pm on five dates as follows:
· Monday May 13 – Coleford, Clock Tower
· Tuesday May 14 – Stroud Subscription Rooms
· Wednesday May 15 – Hereford, High Town
· Thursday May 16 – Gloucester, King’s Square
· Friday May 17 – Cheltenham, High Street
To find out more about how you can stay active and keep your mind healthy, visit our Active ²gether pages.