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Mental Health Awareness Week 2022 – #WeAreHere

This year Mental Health Awareness Week is tackling loneliness. As a provider of mental health support across England, we see day in and day out the impact that social isolation and loneliness can have on people’s mental health. The pandemic has only made this worse. 

All our services across Richmond Fellowship work to combat loneliness. Whether you’re having an at-home visit from someone in our community service team or gathering for lunch living in one of our supported housing services, our staff are there building safe spaces for the people we support. Throughout the pandemic all our services made sure they continued delivering this support at a time it was needed most. Our services helped people feel less alone. 

So, what can you expect from us this week?  

This year we wanted to keep things simple and recognise the important work of our amazing staff and services – not just for delivering high quality support throughout the pandemic, but also for all they do to help people feel less alone.  

So, on our social media we’ll be showing how our services, staff and people we support combat loneliness. Some of our staff will be sharing their experiences with loneliness to help break the stigma and encourage people to seek support for their mental health. 

We’ll also be sharing a RadioSparky Podcast featuring Nicholas, Peer Support Coordinator at Crawley Staying Well, one of our Crisis Havens in Surrey about his experience with loneliness and how the service supports people in their local area. 

How do our models to support recovery tackle loneliness? 

At Richmond Fellowship we have various models to support recovery including Employment Services, Residential Recovery (including Supported Housing and CQC Registered Care Homes), Community Based Services, Crisis Services and Domestic Abuse Services. Each working in their own specialised way to make recovery reality for the people we support.  

  • Models like our Crisis Services are a lifeline for people experiencing a mental health crisis, acting as a sanctuary when people feel most alone. People can find respite either within our Crisis Houses, or peer and professional support in our Crisis Havens. 
  • Our Community-based Services bring people together to connect. They give people the confidence to get back into society through community groups and at-home support with shopping, finances and independent living. These services are essential in reaching people who are isolated and feeling lonely. 
  • As for our housing services, living around likeminded people and having a safe space to grow and recover is hugely beneficial in tackling loneliness and isolation. Our housing services deliver either 24-hour or 12-hour support. Our staff, as well as the other residents, are there to support people on their recovery journeys and to ensure they never feel alone. 
  • Our Employment Services keep in regular contact with the people we support, checking in on their job applications and CV writing, but also their mental health and any other difficulties they might be having. Our employment services work hard to get the people we support into employment that is right for and interests them.  
  • Our Domestic Abuse Services are there for people affected by domestic abuse who are in situations that can leave them feeling entirely alone and isolated. 

Make sure you are following us on our Facebook and Twitter. Don’t forget, we are here, a safe space is available for you to also feel less alone. Find out about your local Richmond Fellowship services here.  

Richmond Fellowship takes part in local radio ‘companions’ campaign

Richmond Fellowship is taking part in a radio campaign to highlight the work of its services during the coronavirus pandemic.

‘Cambridge Companions’ is supported by the government-backed Audio Content Fund and is designed to draw attention to loneliness and offer help and advice to listeners who may be suffering or who are able to reach out to support others.

The week-long campaign, which runs from 22 to 28 March, has been organised by Cambridge 105 Radio and will air on the community radio station as well as partners Cam FM and Star Radio in Cambridgeshire. It will also run on several other stations in East Anglia.

Laura Whitehouse from Richmond Fellowship’s Cambridgeshire Employment service has been taking part in an interview to talk about the work they do, and promo spots will also air across the week to signpost listeners to Richmond Fellowship’s local mental health services.

Kerry Stiles, East Anglia Area Manager at Richmond Fellowship said:

‘I’m so thrilled that our services in Cambridgeshire have been invited to be involved in this amazing initiative. Our teams have been working tirelessly during the pandemic to deliver support to those suffering from mental ill health and most isolated, often utilising technology to deliver face to face support digitally where appropriate’.

Trevor Dann, executive producer of the Companions campaign and a board member at Cambridge 105 Radio said:

‘We’ve really enjoyed working with Richmond Fellowship and the other charities to promote the work they do. The pandemic has really shone a light on how vital these services and organisations are to our local communities’.

To find out more information about the Companions campaign and to listen to Laura’s interview, visit www.radiocompanions.co.uk.

The campaign launch coincides with the start of our #CommunityServicesWeek where we’re shining the spotlight on the work of our Community support services on our social media channels.