mental health awareness week

Mental Health Awareness Week (10th – 16th May 2021) is hosted by the Mental Health Foundation. It’s the UK’s national week to raise awareness of mental health and inspire actions to promote good mental health for all.  This year’s theme is nature.

The evidence is clear that access to nature is crucial for our mental health, and millions of people discovered that during lockdowns in 2020. However, this was not the same for all of us. MHAW 2021 will explore what the barriers to accessing nature are and ensure that everyone is able to share in the natural world and experience its mental health benefits.

How can I get involved in Mental Health Awareness Week in B&NES?

Bath and North East Somerset Council is celebrating Mental Health Awareness Week by sharing local stories and projects on social media throughout the week and inspiring more people to connect with nature in a range of creative and digital ways.

You can join in the week by:

  • Experiencing nature – take a moment and notice the nature around you from smelling freshly cut grass, take care of a house plant, notice any trees, flowers, or animals whilst out and about or at home. Sign up to one of the activities below.
  • Sharing nature – take a photo, video or sound recording and it with others using the hashtags #ConnectWithNature and #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek. Why not take a look at one of the real-life stories below.
  • Talking about nature – using tips and resources to talk about nature to family, friends, neighbours, colleagues, and your community.

Real – Life Stories

Here a few people’s stories about how being nature can improve mental health and wellbeing:

“I made this mandala from an old hula-hoop, a large ball of sisal garden twine and a big 12mm crochet hook. About this time last year when we were getting used to lockdown, I’d take myself out to the garden for half an hour before work or at lunchtime and add a bit to the mandala. It was like a meditation in the sunshine, listening to the birds and watching all the creatures around me while I worked. Very relaxing and peaceful and I ended up with a lovely piece of garden décor that has made a lot of people smile.

It looks complicated but it’s actually just three simple crochet stitches. There was no pattern, I made it up as I went along. Starting from the outside edge and working into the middle with a slightly different pattern of stitches in each round. That was also quite meditative and mindful as it helped me focus on getting literally and metaphorically ‘centred’ while being ‘grounded’ with my bare feet in the grass as I crocheted.”

a woven mandala

  • The Community Farm Grow and Testimonials

I have constant physical pain and often live consumed by my thoughts. Grow and Make at The Community Farm has helped me access my feelings and learn to accept them whatever they are. The fabulous scenery has also helped me feel connected to something larger than myself and has made me feel at one with nature.

I especially enjoy mornings spent foraging, planting seeds, harvesting in the polytunnels and weeding in the flower gardens, as these activities allow me to feel totally connected to the elements and environment around me, whilst the daily check-in gives me the opportunity to be open about how I am feeling.

Grow and Make Participant

Immersion in nature by growing, sowing and nurturing plants at Grow and Make, at The Community Farm each week, has helped me value and prioritise doing things that bring me joy as well as giving me more confidence in my practical skills - my allotment has never looked so good! Being out in nature has made me rediscover the benefits of using activity to calm the mind, learn to accept mistakes and really enjoy the process of growing both plants and within myself.

Grow and Make Participant 

What’s On

There are various face to face and online events happening during the week:

Many schools, community groups and organisations across B&NES will be taking part in their own way. Remember small things can make a big impact when it comes to mental health

For more information on Mental Health Awareness week, visit Mental Health Foundation.

Your rating: 

No votes yet
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.