Celebrations are being held in Wakefield, on October 10th, World Mental Health Day, to celebrate positive mental health and challenge stigma.

An event is being hosted by the South West Yorkshire Mental Health NHS Trust, at the Education Centre, Fieldhead, Wakefield. The Trust is holding the event jointly with the local authority and the voluntary sector and it incorporates many different workshops and information stalls providing advice and information about wider mental health issues. There will also be a question and answer session during the day, where people can pose questions to an experienced and varied panel.

‘Creativity in mental health’ is the theme underpinning the celebrations, and the event marks the launch of the INSPIRE! Project which starts an eighteen month ‘artist in residence’ initiative. The event will provide visitors with an opportunity to meet the artist, try out their art skills with a wide range of ‘taster sessions’ and view the exhibition of artwork produced by people who have used, or do use, mental health or learning disability services.

The event will be held between 10am & 3pm, and no booking is necessary. A free buffet lunch is provided, and a crèche is also available, with fully qualified staff. The event is open to everyone, including members of the public, the media, staff, service users and carers. Mental health workers are encouraged to bring along the people they work with to support them to find out what is available locally. A free mini-bus service will be organised to help include service-users and carers across the locality. For more information please call the organisers Lisa or Sarah on 0800 587 2108.

Lisa Maltman, public involvement manager for the Trust, said, ‘We want to bring everyone involved in local mental health services together to promote positive messages about mental health issues and challenge stigma. Yet most of all we want people to come and have a fun experience’.

Staff from the Trust’s PLATT service are also doing their bit to raise awareness about mental health issues on World Mental Health Day. The team will be in the Ridings Shopping Centre on October 10th and will be able to give advice and information about common mental health problems such as stress, depression, anxiety and low self-esteem. They will also offer practical advice on how to notice the early sign of mental distress and help yourself to deal with the symptoms. On the day the team will be offering basic ‘stress tests’ which will help people recognise their own stress-levels whilst reinforcing the message that anyone can experience mental health problems if they experience high enough levels of stress and cannot cope.


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