October is a big month in mental health. Each year on the 10th is World Mental Health Day. An entire day dedicated to growing awareness of mental health issues around the globe.
Talking FreELY is making October a big month for mental health in Ely too, by putting on two events. Both free of charge and open to everyone.
The first is being held on the 12th October in partnership with Soham Village College. We’re delighted to announce that Author and mental health pundit Natasha Devon will be visiting the College to share her own experiences and hold a discussion about mental health.
Natasha Devon MBE delivers talk across the UK as well as conducting research on mental health, body image, gender and social equality. She regularly gives evidence to the Education and Health Select Committees, representing the interests of teenagers and teachers.
Natasha has co-authored several books, writes regularly for the Guardian, is a former columnist for Cosmopolitan Magazine and currently has a weekly column in the Times Educational Supplement. In 2016, the Sunday Times and Debretts named Natasha one of the 500 most influential people in Britain. ‘A Beginner’s Guide to Being Mental: An A-Z’ by Natasha Devon was published in May 2018.
Doors will open to the public at 4 pm with Natasha speaking from 5 – 6 pm.
Founder of Talking FreELY, Anthony Sigrist, said ‘I’m so pleased that Natasha is coming back to the area. She came to give a talk at Ely College earlier in the year I had an enormous amount of positive feedback from people who came along. Natasha is highly respected in the field of mental health and has some very powerful and highly important messages to share. The fact that Talking FreELY can facilitate another opportunity for the people of Ely and the surrounding area to hear her speak is an honor.’
Our second October event is a pop-up cafe, which will be held on 27th October at Ely Cathedral Conference Centre. Come along and enjoy free refreshments, chat with our talking volunteers and listen to some of our excellent guest speakers.
This time we’ll hear from Ely local, Serena Moden, who will talk about her experiences with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and how it has affected her and the people around her. Next up we’ll here from James Stubbins, who will read a powerful poem he has written about his experiences (warning, contains explicit language). We’ll also hear from James Sheard from Voiceability, who provide advocacy support for vulnerable people and help them to get their voices heard.
There will be an opportunity to try out some yoga, with taster sessions and a fitness expert on-hand to talk about your own needs and suggest possible solutions.
Everyone is welcome from 9.30 to 13.00.
Talking FreELY Trustee Dr Steve Case-Upton says ‘Giving people a forum to explore mental health and talk about their own experiences is vitally important. Talking FreELY events do just that and are quickly becoming an anticipated event within our community. The statistics around mental health are staggering with 1 in 4 people having experienced mental health problems at one time or another. Many of these suffer in silence and Talking FreELY is part of a growing movement in changing this, helping more and more people to step forward and seek the help they need and not be in fear of being judged.’
Details of both events can be found on the Talking FreELY Facebook page or by contacting Talking FreELY at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Press release from Talking FreELY