York St John University student launches charity mental health campaign
Published: 05 September 2019
With 2 in 3 people reporting having experienced a mental health problem in their lifetime, on September 10th (World Suicide Prevention Day), York Mind are launching the ‘Mind Your Mates’ campaign. The campaign aims to educate more people in the community about how to support people experiencing problems with their mental health, particularly within the workplace.
Every week until October 10th (World Mental Health Day), participants will be provided with an email information pack, which includes first-hand accounts, practical advice on how to spot the signs of mental ill-health, tips for what to say, and information on what to do to help someone who may be struggling.
The campaign has been launched by York St John University student Laura Grove, 22. Laura is a second year English Language and Linguistics student who has undertaken a summer internship at York Mind to research and manage the campaign.
Laura explained “I’ve struggled with my mental health for the last ten years, spending the majority of my teenage years in and out of hospital, and as a result I have faced a lot of stigma. Now that I am at University, I am motivated by my experiences to try and help others better understand mental health, the signs and symptoms and different ways you can support someone you know who may be struggling. Just like we look after our physical health, it’s important we do the same with our mental health. I’ve loved working on this project and it has given me a great opportunity to gain invaluable experience working within a mental health charity, as I hope to one day become a Counselling Psychologist.”
Holly Bilton from York Mind, who has been supervising Laura during her internship, said: “We are so grateful to York St John for supporting Laura’s internship at York Mind. Laura’s experiences with mental ill-health and her skills in Language and Linguistics have made her the perfect person to run this campaign, it has been a pleasure to have her in the team. We are really excited to share the campaign with anyone who would like to learn more about how to help others around them.”
Rachel Wicaksono, Head of School for Languages and Linguistics at York St John University said, “I am very proud of Laura’s work on the Mind Your Mates campaign. Laura is an example of the extremely positive effect one person can have on a large group of people - simply by listening, sharing experiences and talking about ways in which mental health can be improved. Of course, Laura’s training in linguistics has given her a special awareness of how to effectively communicate the message that friends and colleagues can support each other! We are very proud of her ability to use her knowledge to help others.”
Eliza Hunton, York St John University’s Student Opportunities Co-ordinator, added: “We are very proud to support York Mind in their important work and are delighted that they are providing Laura with the opportunity to develop her career goals through the York St John Summer Internship Programme. Laura’s dedication and creativity has shone throughout her time with York Mind and it has been a pleasure to see her progress, especially with the Mind Your Mates project. We have been amazed to see Laura and all our interns make such a valuable impact on the local community in York and further afield this year.”
The Mind Your Mates campaign launches on the 10th September and you, or your organisation can sign up for free online here.
York Mind supports around 4500 people in York every year, and helps individuals to continue their lives before, during and after experiencing a variety of mental health conditions.