Local community asked to support Time to Change and stamp out stigma


Time to Change is England’s most ambitious programme to end the stigma and discrimination faced by people who experience mental health problems.

This year Time to Change and the South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust are asking people in Calderdale, Kirklees and Wakefield to join celebrities like Frank Bruno, Trisha Goddard, Mel C and Gok Wan to help end mental health prejudice by becoming part of England’s biggest ever ‘visual pledge’.

Whether you pledge to support a friend or family member who has a mental health problem, speak out about your own experiences of mental health problems, or pledge to attend a Time to Get Moving event in October, your pledge will join thousands of others who have already pledged to help end mental health problems.

Trisha Goddard who made a pledge said, "Almost 25 years ago I pledged I’d do the utmost to get rid of the shame surrounding my sister’s mental illness. Then 16 years ago I pledged to refuse to be ashamed about my own mental health problems. I continue to pledge to shine bright light into dark corners of ignorance."

Spice Girl Mel C added, "Mental health issues are just part of life and people can and do recover to lead full and successful lives. I’m pledging my support to help end mental health prejudice. When will you?"

To make your pledge upload your pledge and photo online at www.time-to-change.org.uk and add your face to a huge mosaic that will be live on the Time to Change website, www.time-to-change.org.uk. This mosaic and pledges will show just how many people believe that it’s time to change.

Chief executive Steven Michael said, "The pledge is an important tool in the fight against mental health stigma and discrimination. We know that face to face contact with someone who has experienced a mental health problem, who can talk openly and confidently about it, is key to transforming our understanding and attitudes. Many famous faces are behind this campaign, but they need everyday people like us to speak out as well.

" Stigma can be extremely damaging, making it harder for people with mental health problems and/or learning disabilities to get the help they need, to recover and to live fulfilling lives. In fact, many people say that stigma is harder to deal with than the ill health itself. It’s therefore very important that we challenge attitudes which make people feel like they have no value in our society”.

Earlier this year, the Trust launched its own ‘Help us stop stigma in 2010’ poster campaign. A series of nine posters have been displayed across the area and local communities are encouraged to display posters in shops, places of worship, community settings or anywhere else they feel is appropriate. Posters can be obtained, free of charge, by calling 01924 327567 or emailing comms@swyt.nhs.uk

Local community asked to support Time to Change and stamp out stigma

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