A poster designed by a young woman from Pontefract has been chosen over dozens of entries from across Wakefield, Calderdale and Kirklees to win an NHS poster competition.
The South West Yorkshire Mental Health Trust launched the competition earlier in the year and invited people who use their services to get creative and design a poster to advertise the Trust’s World Mental Health Day (October 10th) events.
24-year-old Vicky Laver’s poster impressed the judges and her design is now being printed into leaflets and posters which should be distributed across the area later in the summer.
Vicky – who is a 3rd year law student at Leeds Metropolitan University – said, "I couldn’t believe it when I was told I won – I was really happy. I saw the competition advertised and I thought I’d have a go. I wanted to show how mental health problems can affect everyone across the world – that’s why I drew the world with different people around it. I added doctors in there not to show them treating people but to show they are just as likely to have mental health problems too."
She continued, "The hands at the front of the world are caring hands, and I drew everyone holding hands to represent unity. I tried to represent all different parts of society and all different cultures. The idea was to try and break through some of the stigma surrounding mental illness, show that it can affect anyone and we need to stand as a united front to try and beat it. I decided the poster had to be positive – I think if you’re not positive you end up creating a stigma yourself. If we’re not positive about ourselves we’ll never get better.’
Two events will be held in the Wakefield area to celebrate World Mental Health Day – they will take place at Pontefract Town Hall (9th October) and Treacey Hall, Wakefield Cathedral (11th October). Members of the public, health and social care staff and mental health service users and carers all invited to join in the celebrations and learn about mental health issues.