‘Better mental health services for all’ is message on World Mental Health Day

BY LORNA SHARP: This World Mental Health Day on 10th October, West Kent Mind are joining the campaign for better mental health services for everyone – whatever their race, age, gender, sexual orientation, disability or class.

Our society is more divided than ever. Everywhere we look we can see inequalities determined by race, gender, age, disability, sexual orientation and class. The pandemic has had a major impact on people’s mental health and some groups, including health and other frontline workers, students, people living alone, and those with pre-existing mental health conditions, have been especially affected.

A WHO survey conducted in mid-2020 clearly showed, however, that services for mental, neurological and substance use disorders had been significantly disrupted during the pandemic. Inequalities within society have only been further amplified by the events of the last 18 months and with increased pressure on access to mental health support, this puts the mental health of millions at risk. Meaningful support at community level has now become even more vital.

As part of Mind’s national network of local Minds, we join together in the fight to right this injustice and campaign for better, more equal services, for fairness, for respect and for life-changing support for all. As a community we all have a part to play and we believe our West Kent community is one who can make their voice heard. if you only do one thing today, whether you are sharing your own experience, or sharing someone else’s, we encourage you speak out against the inequalities in our mental health system. By talking, educating ourselves and raising awareness of those inequalities that exist among us, we can be part of the solution.

West Kent Mind work solely to support those who live and work within our community, be that through our vital therapeutic groups, affordable counselling, supported housing or our training and education programmes.

Every penny we raise through successful funding applications, the fundraising efforts of our local residents and businesses and from the training courses and workshops we deliver, directly supports these services. Now more than ever, those experiencing mental ill-health need our support and we thank everyone of you for the part you play in making this possible. It takes a community to run our charity – from reading our articles and raising awareness to making donations and sharing our social media posts – we all have a part to play in ensuring that nobody need face a mental health problem alone.

There are many different ways that you can get involved and make a difference – volunteering with us, becoming a regular giver, buying from our local Mind shop, taking part in a fundraising event, attending one of our educational workshops or courses, championing our workplace training at your organisation or group, following and sharing our content on social media and taking notice of your own mental health. Opening up conversations and making mental health support within our community accessible and available to all will remains our mission and we appreciate the support of our community more than ever.

For more information on our services, please visit westkentmind.org.uk or email us at hello@westkentmind.org.uk for general enquiries or support.

Upcoming Events and Training:
For further details on any of our courses, please visit the training section of our website or email training@westkentmind.org.uk.

All of our courses are provided at subsidised rates and any profits go directly to support our work in the community. Our training includes a range of certified MHFA England courses and interactive workshops.

Upcoming courses include: Mental Health First Aid, Understanding Stress and Anxiety and Understanding Depression.