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Activities will be held across Gloucestershire and Herefordshire to mark Mental Health Awareness Week.

The occasion – which runs from May 11 to 17 – is organised annually by the Mental Health Foundation. The theme of this year’s week is Mindfulness.

Working with a range of partners ²gether NHS Foundation Trust is supporting the week and coordinating events to raise awareness of mental wellbeing, promote advice and highlight locally available support.

Dominika Lipska-Rosecka, Social Inclusion Manager for ²gether, said: “We work all year round to treat and support people with mental health conditions.

“Mental Health Awareness Week is a great opportunity for us to reach even more people by highlighting how common mental health issues are, the steps we can take to improve our own mental wellbeing and the support that is available.

“One in four of us will be experiencing a mental health problem at any given time, with the most common issues we experience including depression, stress and anxiety.

“There is, however, no need to struggle on alone. There is a lot we can all do to improve our mental health and there is help available for anyone who needs it.

“We hope to take this message far and wide during Mental Health Awareness Week and we’d love to see a great turn out at all of our events.”

Events ²gether is organising for Mental Health Awareness Week 2015 include:

Gloucestershire

  •  Working with Cotswold District Council and five primary schools in Cirencester, children will be asked to decorate balloons  with their thoughts and feelings to generate conversations about mental health and wellbeing.
  •  A mindfulness session is being held at Charlton Lane Hospital, in Cheltenham, and Pets as Therapy sessions will take place at Charlton Lane and within Wotton Lawn Hospital, Gloucester.
  •  An information stand will be in the Corinium Museum, Cirencester, from 9am until 3pm on Monday May 11.
  •  A mindfulness taster session will be held at Cotswold District Council offices on Tuesday May 12.
  •  ²gether staff will man an awareness stand at the University of Gloucestershire’s Oxstalls Campus, in Gloucester, from 1.30pm until 4pm on Tuesday May 12.
  •  A mindfulness taster session will be held in Cirencester’s Churn Centre from 1.30pm on Wednesday May 13.
  •  A ‘healthy lifestyles’ fun and games session for young people, run by ²gether and Action for Children, will take place in Pittville Park, Cheltenham, on Wednesday May 13.
  •  A stand will also be in place at the Main Place, in Coleford, from 1 to 4pm on Thursday May 14.
  •  Cirencester Leisure Centre will host an information stand from 9am until 3pm on Thursday May 14.
  •  Working with staff at a sheltered housing scheme in Gloucester, a dementia and mental health awareness session will be delivered on May 14.
  •  A stand, choir and information bus will be in Cirencester Market Place from 9am until 3pm on Friday May 15. There will also be a healthy food demonstration from the Wiggly Worm.
  •  Mental Health First Aid training will be provided to staff at Gloucester City Homes on Friday May 15.
  •  A ²gether stand will be among the attractions at the ‘Paws on Patrol’ event in Gloucester Park on Saturday May 16.

Herefordshire

  •  Working with Herefordshire Council, events will take place at their Plough Lane headquarters throughout the week. These include stands, a yoga session and a health walk.
  •  Staff from ²gether will man an awareness stand at Waitrose, Hereford, from 10am until 3pm on Tuesday May 12.
  •  A ²gether stand will be at Halo Leisure Pool, Hereford, from 9am until 4pm on Thursday May 14.
  •  A stand will also be in place at Halo, in Leominster, from 9am until 4pm, on Friday May 15.
  •  Mental Health First Aid training will be provided to admin staff working for ²gether on Monday May 11.

Throughout the week ²gether will also be working with NHS Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group and others to promote good mental health in the workplace with local employers.

A number of ‘tea and talk’ sessions will be held with organisations including Marks and Spencer and Tesco Extra in Cirencester, Cirencester Town Council and Home Group, in Cheltenham.

The national theme for Mental Health Awareness Week 2015 is Mindfulness. More information on Mindfulness can be found on the Mental Health Foundation website here.

Mindfulness sessions are also run by ²gether’s Let’s Talk service. To find out more about Let’s Talk and what courses are available, ring 0800 073 2200 or visit www.talk²gether.nhs.uk.

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