Kindness matters for your mental health

As time moves on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is changing all our lives and bringing many challenges. For some it’s bringing anxiety, fear or isolation, for others it is causing financial hardship or health worries.

Our community advice and support hub provides essential support for those most in need in the city. Many of the requests we are receiving are around mental health needs. 

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week and I wanted to take the opportunity to once again remind people that if you are struggling, support is available, so please do use it.

The theme this year is ‘kindness’ which is so important at a time like this. 

Since the outbreak, people have really come together to achieve some extraordinary things. Alongside the fear and uncertainty I can also see community spirit and neighbourly support. 

Helping others is good for our own mental health and wellbeing too. It can help reduce stress, take your mind off of your own worries, keep you connected with others and improve our emotional wellbeing. 

We can all make the choice to be kind. Why not ask your neighbour if they need anything from the shop, call someone you know may feel alone, say hello to people you see in the street (from a safe distance), give colleagues a thank you when they’ve helped you out, or perhaps offer your time to volunteer.

More than 1100 people have already volunteered with Community Works since the start of 2020. That’s more than four times what we usually see at this time of year and shows how much people want to help others right now.

As a city we must continue to work together and build on the positive things that are happening, both now, and also in the future. 

We must also remember to be kind to ourselves – to make sure that we take the time to listen to our own needs as well as those around us. 

So at this most difficult of times, please look after yourself and be kind.

Councillor Clare Moonan
Chair of the Health & Wellbeing Board

 

Share your own acts of kindness

During Mental Health Awareness Week you can share any acts of kindness that you have given or received using the hashtags #kindnessmattersbrightonhove and #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek.

Coronavirus and your mental health

Each week Mind in Brighton & Hove share weekly wellbeing tips that include local and national initiatives, activities and simple ideas to maintain and improve your wellbeing during this challenging time. 

The Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust is working hard to help and support those in our community who may be struggling. They have also shared some top tips and useful resources to help you look after your health and wellbeing.

Mental health support in Brighton & Hove

If you or other household members feel low, anxious or stressed, there’s information that can help on the NHS Every Mind Matters website. This also includes specific advice on the impact of coronavirus.

While it's normal to feel afraid and lonely at a time like this, worsening mental health could indicate the need for outside help.

  • Sussex Mental Healthline – freephone 0300 5000 101 – provides 24/7 support from registered clinicians. As well as crisis support it provides psychological support to anyone with general concerns about their mental health, and if needed they can refer you for local assessment and treatment.
  • Community Rootsonline or freephone 0808 196 1768 – a network of local services committed to supporting good mental health and wellbeing in Brighton & Hove.
  • Samaritans – call 116 123 – 24hrs a day, 365 days a year.

 

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