Lancashire Mind has had to adapt to how they offer support because of the effect of being in lockdown has had on the people’s mental wellbeing.
According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), there has been a dramatic increase in the number of adults suffering some form of depressive symptoms since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020.
Almost one in five adults, 19.2%, reported experiencing some form of depression during the coronavirus pandemic in June 2020; this had almost doubled from around 1 in 10 – 9.7%, before the pandemic.
Tommy McIlravey, CEO at Lancashire Mind, explains how the pandemic has affected the mental health charity and how they will continue to support as many people as possible:
“We know that COVID-19 has had a negative impact on many of those living with a mental health condition, and that many people have experienced a mental health condition for the first time, as a result of the challenges, pressures and changes the pandemic has brought.
“If you or someone you know has experienced a mental health condition, you will know how important it is to know how, and where, to get help. We want to continue to be there for everyone in Lancashire when they need us so that no one has to face a mental health condition alone.”
COVID-19 presented new challenges for Lancashire Mind in how they could offer support, the charity has increased their virtual support offerings to reach those in need.
This included weekly newsletters for schools, online resources for schools and young people, support guides for adults and workplace guides and training for employers and employees.
They also continued to offer a free vital signposting service to those in crisis who needed help with mental health during the pandemic.
The pandemic has also had a detrimental effect on fundraising for charities across the country, Lancashire Mind is no exception and suffered in the loss of income:
“Over the last six months, we have been fortunate enough to be supported by some incredible individuals, community groups and businesses who have fundraised for us in some of the most creative ways. This support has been fantastic and provided us with much-needed income.
“Unfortunately, this amazing support is not enough, and the many cancelled events and challenges have left a significant gap in our income which could result in a loss or reduction of the services we offer across the county at a time when it’s most needed.”
The charity is appealing for support to be able to continue the vital work they do, Tommy explains exactly how the funds can help a vulnerable young person in the county:
“Lancashire Mind is an independent charity separate from the national Mind charity, and every donation matters, and makes a difference, to what we can do for people living in Lancashire.
“For example, the recent issues surrounding A levels and GCSE’s demonstrate how stressful and vulnerable some of our young people can be. £50 would pay for a young person to benefit from our five-week Bounce Forward programme, which helps them to establish positive coping strategies and increase their resilience. Last year we worked with 4351 children across Lancashire.
“It’s vitally important that we’re able to continue our work, especially now, and that’s why we’re asking for help from the people of Lancashire, for the people of Lancashire.”
For any more information on the work Lancashire Mind do or how you can donate, check out their website here.