A team of Many Minds volunteers dressed in silver sparkly outfits will be taking to the streets of central Bristol to encourage people to ask for help this January 15th also known as ‘Blue Monday’, or the ‘most depressing day’ of the year.
We will be spending the day asking shoppers in Broadmead and the Galleries shopping centre; Are you ok? What do you need? What can I help with? and delivering dozens of random of acts of kindness. We will also be offering people cards with suggestions of how they could help and open up conversations with others about mental health.
“This day is labelled Blue Monday as due to the weather, debt level and the come down from Christmas that it can be a challenging time of year for lots of people,” says Viki Browne, Artistic Director of Many Minds. “We know that mental ill health can affect people at any time of year. We know that so many people suffer in silence and don’t ask for the help and support that they need Today we are asking people if we can help them, to try and begin a conversation about what people need to better support them with their mental health.’
Twenty five year old Viki has experienced depression and anxiety and has made a performance based on her experiences called HELP! that is coming to the Wardrobe Theatre in Bristol from 22nd – 24th February.
“I have struggled with periods of mental illness, not understanding what was going on I left it until I was at breaking point to reach out and ask for help. There is still a lot of stigma surrounding mental ill health and that is why I felt it was important to make a show about it to help get people talking about it more,” says Viki.
Statistics show that 28% of men and 19% of women who have had mental health problems admitted that they had not sought medical help. Furthermore, more than a third of men and a quarter of women, either waited more than two years or chose never to tell friends or family about their problem.
Today in Bristol city centre we hope to get people talking about their mental health.