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Mental Health Awareness Week

Mental Health Awareness Week

Mental Health Awareness Week runs from Monday 9th May to Sunday 15th May 2022. Join the fight for mental health.

 For Mental Health Awareness Week this year, the Mental Health Foundation are raising awareness of the impact of loneliness on our mental wellbeing and the practical steps we can take to address it. The Mental Health Foundation started Mental Health Awareness Week 21 years ago and they continue to set the theme, organise, and host the week. It's an opportunity for the whole of the UK to focus on achieving good mental health and has grown to become one of the biggest awareness weeks across the UK and globally.
Loneliness is something that we all feel at times but when it is chronic or long-term it can have serious effects on our mental health. Loneliness is affecting more and more of us in the UK and has had a huge impact on our physical and mental health during the pandemic, where millions of us have experienced a mental health problem, or seen a loved one struggle.
Loneliness is not about the number of friends we have, the time we spend on our own or something that happens when we reach a certain age. Loneliness is the feeling we experience when there is a mismatch between the social connections we have and those that we need or want. That means it can be different for all of us.
For them, for us and for you – we must take this chance to step up the fight for mental health. That means fighting for change, for fairness, for respect and for life-changing support.
Our connection to other people and our community is fundamental to protecting our mental health and we need to find better ways of tackling the epidemic of loneliness. We can all play a part in this. 
Practical steps to combat loneliness
Don’t cancel social interactions
Even when you are feeling low and like you have no motivation to leave the house, allow yourself to get outside and see your friends and partake in your hobbies. You will feel better for it even if it doesn’t feel like it will before you go.
Plan small activities
Not every adventure needs to be a full day. Planning small activities with trusted and close friends will help you feel more connected, even if its just going for a short dog walk or a coffee.
Reach out
We all have busy lives but you never know who may be struggling: make time to reach out to someone in your contacts that you haven’t spoken to in a while. It doesn’t even have to be a full conversation, just a funny meme or picture to help make someone feel better.
Speak out
If you’re feeling low, lonely or depressed, don’t bottle these things up. Speak to someone, anyone, about anything. You don’t have to tell everyone exactly how you’re feeling, but just a conversation can have so many benefits and leave you feeling more positive.
How you can get involved
Speak out and share why you’re fighting. Whether you use social media or simply speak with friends, family or colleagues – mark Mental Health Awareness Week 2022 by telling those around you why you’ve joined the fight for mental health and help create a movement for change.
Donate - With everyone's support and understanding, we can lead the fight for mental health together, while continuing to give support to those of us with a mental health problem. Many charities are run by volunteers and rely on donations to be able to provide the support that they do.
Where you can get support
The Mental Health Foundation - A range of content designed to give you more information and to help you to look after your mental health.
The Mix - A UK-based charity that provides free, confidential support for young people under 25. Young people can get support from the trained team, either by phone, webchat, or email.
Shout 85258  - A free, confidential, 24/7 text-messaging support service. By texting the word ‘SHOUT’ to 85258 you will start a conversation with a trained Shout Volunteer, who will text you back and forth, sharing only what you feel comfortable with.
Samaritans  - A UK-based charity that provides support at any time, from any phone for free. Call free on 116 123, day or night, 365 days a year.
CALM - Campaign Against Living Miserably, helping prevent suicide, standing together to show that life is always worth living. 
Together we can tackle loneliness and the stigma surrounding mental health conditions. #IveBeenThere