What is Mind?
Mind is the UK’s leading independent health charity. According to Mind, one in four people in Britain experience mental health problems at some point in their lives. The charity aims to improve upon the existing mental health services available in the country through methods such as collaboration with national and local government, ensuring more support for people with existing mental health problems, and enabling people suffering to gain more independence and choice in their day-to-day lives.
What help can the charity provide?
Mind offers a range of different forms of help for students, including bereavement support, crisis services, housing support and LGBTQ+ mental health assistance. Their website also contains helpful advice for people seeking to support someone close to them suffering from a mental illness; their tips vary from where you can find help on behalf of a friend or family member, to what action to take if you encounter someone suffering from a panic or anxiety attack. Their now-famous mental health A-Z, all accessible on the charity’s website, details different mental health problems that people can encounter, and popular treatments for these.
What are Mind’s latest campaigns?
Perhaps the most widely publicised ongoing campaign curated by Mind and the organisation ‘Rethink Mental Illness’ is the ‘Time to Change’ movement, which has enjoyed considerable success. Mind has reported an overall 8.3% improvement in overall public attitude towards mental health since the campaign began in 2007. The anti-stigma campaign has in the past worked with young people and youth centres, African and Caribbean communities, and within high-profile organisations.
Another valuable campaign curated by the charity is the ‘Blue Light’ programme, aiming to reach out and support workers in the emergency services, especially after large-scale human disasters. According to the charity, thousands of paid workers and volunteers have used this campaign to actively challenge mental health stigma in the workplace, and have taken advantage of the services that Mind offers.
How can you support Mind?
Becoming a member of the charity is easily done through their website. The membership fee for one year is £6 for full-time students, and ensures that you receive a newsletter on a regular basis detailing all of Mind’s latest campaigns and research, as well as the ability to vote for the charity’s trustees, giving members a direct influence over who directs the charity forward.
An additional way of voicing support for Mind and against mental health stigma is through a ‘Mental Health Selfie’, a way of telling your own mental health story to the world while giving people the chance to benefit from your experiences. The content of the video can include how you live your everyday life, and the types of treatment you’ve found helpful.
Perhaps the most familiar way to support a charity is through fundraising. Organising events such as cake sales, sponsored silences or swims and even flash mobs can directly contribute towards Mind’s pioneering research and support for anyone affected by mental illness in the UK.