Charity seeks mental health champions

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Midlothian residents are being encouraged to join a national programme working on improving mental health and tackling discrimination.

See Me, the national programme to end mental health discrimination is looking train people to be leaders in changing attitudes around mental health.

The Community Champions programme will enable people from Midlothian to make positive changes in their own community, with the support of See Me.

See Me has Champions in various parts of Scotland, who are tackling mental health stigma in a variety of setting and in very different ways. One Champion Richard, from Moffat in Dumfries and Galloway, has had over 1000 conversations with people about mental health while handing out badges, which can be used to keep conversations going.

Other Champions have held events in their communities, are working with Universities or tackling issues in minority communities.

See Me is looking for Champions, who have personal experience of mental health conditions, who could challenge discrimination in workplaces, in health and social care, with children and young people or by bringing their own ideas to engage their local community.

Jane Hornby, a See Me Champion in Livingston, said: “I wanted to bring something to my local community, tackling stigma and discrimination with a focus on the family and home environment.

“It makes the issue of stigma and discrimination much more personal for people when it is someone within their own local community and I believe it produces sustained change.”

Rebekah Moore from See Me, who runs the Community Champions programme, said: “Whatever you are passionate about, or whatever motivates you, we can help and support you to use that, to take action against mental health stigma, which can change lives.

“Whether you have an idea for a project, or you want to do something but you’re not sure what, through the training we can develop a plan which can help you to make a positive change in your community.

“We really believe that the only way to make a real difference to communities is to have people who know the area leading in making the changes.”

Champions receive three, one and a half day training sessions, held over six months in Perth. The deadline for applications is August 15 at 5pm.

Find out more and apply at https://www.seemescotland.org/our-movement-for-change/supporters/champions