End Stigma Surrey

It has never been more important to look at our mental health and emotional wellbeing. The growing evidence of how the pandemic has affected and impacted our overall wellbeing meets the statistics around how many people are currently living with mental health issues: together they are escalating our mental health crisis.

One of the biggest barriers to helping and supporting people is mental health stigma and discrimination. People experience stigma in the workplace, public services and even within their own family and social circles. Self-stigma is another factor. Given this reluctance in people to come forward and ask for help, many are struggling in silence.

Time to Change Surrey is a trusted campaign that raises awareness and reduces stigma around mental health. With the national Time to Change campaign ending in March 2021, local initiatives are vital to continue the aim to change perceptions, improve attitudes and behaviours, challenge and reduce stigma.

Rising to the challenge

In 2021, Surrey County Council / Public Health awarded Catalyst, Mary Frances Trust and Acting Out Productions (affiliated to Let’s Link charity) the contract for Time To Change Surrey. We use our combined knowledge and work together at reducing the stigma associated with mental health for people in Surrey. We build on the core elements of the campaign to date: the Lived Experience Champions’ (LECs) scheme and our highly immersive, impactful drama-based training.

Adding to those is a range of new initiatives including: personal development support/training online and in person (national guidelines permitting) for people living directly or indirectly with mental health issues (carers, friends, family, colleagues) to enable them to speak openly about their own experiences and mental health generally; a lively digital and social media programme to promote key messages, events and activities; new drama-based training for the public, private and community sector; an anti-stigma toolkit and directory for everyone, to aid learning and action around mental health stigma / discrimination.

To read the full Press Release click here.