VIDEO: 6 people talk about how a simple act such as listening can make a big difference to people facing mental health problems

”There’s this stigma attached to not only mental health but how we approach talking about mental health”

Today is Time To Talk Day (Feb 4th 2016) – aiming to get the nation talking about mental health.

Time to Change is England’s first and biggest campaign to motivate and engage people in an open conversation about mental health – with the aim to stop discrimination and change behaviour towards people facing these problems.

Led by Mind & Rethink Mental Illness and funded by the Department of Health, Comic Relief & The Big Lottery Fund, the mental health anti-stigma programme started in 2007. They work with children, young people and adults, focusing on the workplace – through the employer pledge initiative – as well as on black and minority ethnic communities.

In a recent survey Time to Change found that more than 7000 people with mental health problems are experiencing feelings of isolation, worthlessness & shame because of the stigma and discrimination they have faced. A significant 60% of them mentioned that they felt better and relieved after they started talking about it.

Since 2009, Time to Change has run several awareness campaigns through various media channels. They have helped to raise awareness of this ‘elephant in the room’ and contributed small changes in how people with mental health issues are treated.

Last year’s campaign, #SmallThings launched an on-line platform where campaign supporters can share the small things that might help these people feel better and happier.

Here’s another anti-stigma campaign – released in 2012 aimed at young people affected by mental health problems in the West Midlands.

Time to Change hosts 2 #itstimetotalk sessions tonight at The Canvas Cafe in London, from 6-9pm.