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Local MP visits Just Talk Campaign

On Saturday 28th October Just Talk Campaign had one of it’s monthly drop in sessions. This drop in session was a very busy one, with the Local MP, James Cartlidge, visiting as well as filming commencing for a video project.


We are pleased to announce Just Talk Campaign received official charity status on October 18th 2017. We satisfied the exacting panel that Just Talk Campaign was for the public benefit and this status will enable us to apply for government grants and seek other funding, which was beyond our grasp before. We are sign-posted from the Samaritans in Colchester and our Citizens Advice Bureau in Sudbury. This comes as we approach one year since it was launched last November. In 2016 we launched the Just Talk Charity, an initiative aimed at helping people seeking urgent support and therapy, and encouraging them to share stories of mental health.

To this end, the charity has made three main pledges: to establish a Well-Being Directory, to set up Hubs – drop-in centres across the country, Just Talk Campaign, where immediate access to therapy is available within 48-hours. And finally, advocate change across the industry. Glenda D Roberts, director at ExploringU counselling service said: “Being a nationwide campaign, we can increase the number of people we currently help tenfold “. The Just Talk-Campaign will be based in close proximity to the present Station Road HQ, with full disabled access and mod cons, from January 2018.

There was standing room only at the Centre for Wellbeing monthly drop-in session on Saturday 28th, where filming started for the video project and through the Kickstarter platform this activity will fund a discussion series aimed at a 16+ target audience, to be filmed on location in front of a studio audience.

The video series is ultimately a space where individuals can talk openly and honestly about their mental health problems. It’s about trust, finding oneself and being human, with informal and personal chat between the host and her guests.

We know that the Just Talk Campaign is making a difference, because as Mark Cartlidge MP said at our monthly meeting “I have been struck by the effectiveness of the community based provision like yours for people with mental health/anxiety issues etc. This was clearly backed up by the positive feedback and experience of people in the room.”

He continued… Happy to say: “The very welcome growth in awareness of mental health issues in society needs to be matched by the availability of effective provision for those who suffer. To this end, from my own experience as an MP I have found that community based initiatives such as the Just Talk campaign really do make a difference in helping my constituents deal with their problems. I saw at first-hand how local people are able to come to a Just Talk session and feel confident that they can share their experiences with a sympathetic audience. I hope that Just Talk is able to help more and more people confront their mental health challenges”.

This has given many people the courage to seek help by removing the stigma surrounding mental health.

Being able to talk about these issues is vital, and the more stories and examples of good practice we can share, the greater its impact.

The Just Talk-Campaign will continue to reach out to people from different classes and demographics, removing the stigma as they go.” says Ms Roberts. A good way to mark your tenth anniversary

“We know that counselling is not always the right option. Especially poorer communities, who are more likely to suffer loss, don’t go for counselling.” says Lawrence Batchelor, Comms director. “But the point is, we’ll go to the doctor when we feel fluish or nagging pain, so why don’t we see a health professional when we feel emotional pain: guilt, loss and loneliness. Too many of us deal with psychological health issues on our own. But we don’t have to. I strongly urge more wellbeing please/we practice emotional hygiene – taking care of our emotions, our minds, with the same diligence we take care of our bodies. According to the Mental Health Foundation Statistics, in 2016 some 5668 suicides were recorded in Great Britain, of these 75% were males. Suicide is still the most common cause of death for men age 20-49 years old in England and Wales. 1 person in 15 has attempted suicide at some point in their lives. Suicide and self-harm are not mental health problems in themselves, but are linked with mental health distress.” Mr Batchelor says ‘What we hear most often from those who meet Glenda through our videos, audio series, workshops, or Website, is “Thank you for helping me remember what I’ve somehow always known,” and “This has helped me tie together all the pieces of truth that I’ve found along the way. This has helped me make sense of everything.”

The Kickstarter project needs funds for Just Talk Campaign and is also seeking donations to go towards its running costs.

Just Talk Campaign urgently require donations to fund the pilot programme for the TV discussion series. Donate through our Donation Page.

PS: Congratulations to the BACP, whom are celebrating 40 years of changing lives, this year.

From left: Glenda Roberts (Director), Christine Basset (trustee), James Cartlidge MP (South Suffolk), Sharon Kendall (HR manager), Camila Ghazala (Mindfulness tutor), Lawrence Batchelor (Comms Dir.)