Who:Cllr Ivan Taylor, Cabinet Member for Health and Well-being at Blackpool Council, Sue Baker, Director of Time to Change, Mental health organisations and charities, Former Rugby League players Jimmy Gittins and Ste McCann, ambassadors for State of Mind, a variety of entertainment acts and people interacting with the pop-village
What:Time to Change Pop-up Village
Where: Cedar Square, Blackpool, Lancashire FY1 1BP
(a local landmark is St Johns Church in the square which is known for the Winter Gardens and Opera House, and is just behind Blackpool Tower). When:10am – 3:30pm, Friday 23 August 2013 Unique mental health pop-up village sets up shop in Cedar Square, Blackpool Time to Change, England’s biggest mental health anti-stigma campaign, is bringing a huge pop–up village to the streets of Blackpool on Friday 23 August – a first in Lancashire.
The day will kick off at 10:30am with a welcome from the Blackpool Unicorns, a performance from salsa band Poco Loco, and a huge flash mob coordinated by Urban Dance, as well as performances from local singers, bands and choir groups.
Emma Louise Jackson, runner-up on The Voice, will be compering throughout the day which sees a range of different free workshops and activities for all the family including a workshop on dreams delivered by the Grundy Art Gallery.
A pop-up cinema will show short films and adverts from Time to Change and there will also be a post office which will include an interactive community notice board. Village goers will be asked to post their thoughts on the notice board on how mental health discrimination can be tackled to allow Time to Change to learn directly from the local community.
Keep an eye out for the fire eaters and stilt walkers who will be wandering around the town on the day to encourage people to pop along to the village.
All of the areas of the pop-up village have all been specially designed so that people without mental health problems can enjoy the activities and learn more about mental health from people with a personal experience. Evidence suggests that this kind of social contact is one of the most effective ways of breaking down stigma and improving attitudes.
Cllr Ivan Taylor, Cabinet Member for Health and Well-being, said: “This is a huge triumph for the town as it’s the first time a Time to Change pop-up village has come to Lancashire.
“Mental health problems affect many people in Blackpool and stigma and discrimination is sadly a very real issue. We want to tackle this and feel that this event, which encourages social contact between people that do have mental health problems and people that don’t, is a fantastic way of dispelling the stigma.”
To ensure the village provides support and information for people with mental health problems, a number of other mental health organisations and charities, including Blackpool Council’s Public Health team, Richmond Fellowship and Connect, will run the surgery where information on local and national services will be available.
Karen Machin, Time to Change regional coordinator for the North West, said: “We've been really amazed by the enthusiasm of so many different organisations in Blackpool, all wanting to get involved in this event to challenge stigma and discrimination. It's great to see everyone working so well together and I'm sure it'll make for an exciting and successful day.”
Darren Bee, Richmond Fellowship’s community development worker, said: “After working with minority communities in Blackpool we have raised awareness of the stigma surrounding mental health. We continue to work with the community to do so.”
The free event will run from 10am – 3:30pm at St John’s Square in Blackpool’s town centre.
Time to Change is England's most ambitious programme to end the stigma and discrimination faced by people with mental health problems. The programme is run by the charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness, and funded by the Department of Health, Comic Relief and Big Lottery Fund. For more information go to www.time-to-change.org.uk Ends Notes to Editors Time to Change
Time to Change is England's most ambitious programme to end the stigma and discrimination faced by people with mental health problems. The programme is run by the charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness, and funded by the Department of Health and Comic Relief. For more information go to www.time-to-change.org.uk
Department of Health
On 2 February 2011 the Department of Health launched No health without mental health, a cross-government mental health outcomes strategy for people of all ages which has the twin aims of keeping people well and improving their mental health and, when people are not well, improving their outcomes through high-quality services.
The strategy is based on six shared objectives, developed with partners from across the mental health sector, and focuses on ‘Recovery’ and the reduction of stigma and discrimination as overarching themes.
To help deliver the objective to reduce the stigma faced by people with mental health problems, in 2011 the Department agreed to support Time to Change, the anti-stigma campaign run by the charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness. The Department of Health is providing the campaign with up to £16 million of funding together with a further £4 million from Comic Relief. This funding will help Time to Change continue their work until March 2015.
Comic Relief is committed to supporting people living with mental health problems. The projects Comic Relief funds ensure people with mental health problems get their voices heard in the decisions that affect their lives and get the help they need to recover. Comic Relief also helps people to promote their rights and reduce the stigma and discrimination they face so that they feel more included in society. The £4 million grant to Time to Change is the second time the charity has awarded Time to Change its largest UK grant and is part of Comic Relief's long standing commitment to this issue. For more information go to www.comicrelief.com
Richmond Fellowship is a specialist provider of mental health services. The charity has pioneered and practised its belief in social inclusion and recovery for more than 50 years, and is now one of the biggest voluntary sector providers of mental health care in England. It offers a wide range of housing, care, employment and community support across more than 120 services and supports more than 9,000 people a year. For more information visit its website: www.richmondfellowship.org.uk
The State of Mind programme was established in 2011 with the aim of improving the mental health, wellbeing and working life of rugby league players and communities. We want to get people talking about it. Our team of mental health and sport professionals deliver comprehensive education sessions at no cost throughout the UK in super league, championship and amateur clubs as well as colleges and community groups, aimed at raising awareness of mental health issues within sport. Whoever you support, you can join the State of Mind Family and be a part of this amazing movement. For more information visit www.stateofmindrugby.com