Today (18th May 2020) marks the launch of Mental Health Awareness Week, the UK’s national week to raise awareness of mental health. The week, which is hosted by the Mental Health Foundation, is in its 20th year and runs from 18-24th May. This year, the theme for the week is kindness. Across the country, people will be celebrating kindness in a range of digital and creative ways within social distancing restrictions.
Stuart Anderson MP said: “As someone who has been personally affected by mental health and the issues highlighted by this campaign, I know only too well the importance of having strong support networks and the enduring difference that acts of kindness can make.”
”Desmond Tutu once described hope as the ability to see light in the darkness. I think that acts of kindness give people a lot of hope. The motto of Wolverhampton is ‘out of darkness cometh light.’ As leaders in the local community, we have a real duty to let that light shine.”
Mark Rowland Chief Executive of the Mental Health Foundation said: “This year may be the most important week we have ever hosted, as we deal with coping and recovering from the coronavirus pandemic. We must do all we can to reduce the psychological and social impacts of the pandemic which could outlast the physical symptoms of the virus.
“At time when we must socially isolate, stories of kindness have helped spread a shared sense of connection and joy. The research backs this up - kindness is deeply connected to mental health. The message this Mental Health Awareness Week is that kindness matters. It matters to our mental health and it will matter hugely in the society we build from here – one that better protects our mental health.”
How to get involved online:
· Reflect on an act of kindness. Share your stories and pictures (with permission) of kindness during the week using #KindnessMatters and #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek
· Use Mental Health Foundation resources in your family, school, workplace and community to join with thousands in practising acts of kindness to yourself and others during the week
· Share your ideas on how you think we could build a kinder society that would support our mental health using #KindnessMatters and #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek
For more information about this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week visit mentalhealth.org.uk/kindnessmatters or join the conversation on social media using #KindnessMatters and #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek