Thurrock Mind: Mental Health Awareness Week

Join the fight for mental health

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week and millions of people across the nation will be talking and thinking about it. This is the time to step up the fight for mental health and think about why it matters to you and those you care about.  Join us to fight for change, for fairness, for respect, and for life-changing support. 

How it has affected us

Many of us are struggling with our mental health during coronavirus. You may have been living with mental health problems before the pandemic began, and you’re finding things harder to cope with than before. Or you may be experiencing mental health problems for the first time perhaps due to loneliness, missing friends and family, stress of home schooling, worry about loved ones, job insecurity, pressure of staying indoors, fear of going out or illness.  

Tips to take care of yourself

If you’re finding it difficult at the moment, it’s important to be kind to yourself and remember that there is no right or wrong way to feel about coronavirus and how it may be affecting your life.

You might find it helpful to focus on learning more about yourself and developing ways to cope, rather than trying to get rid of every difficult feeling.

If some of the activities you enjoy aren’t possible during coronavirus, try to plan a new routine of enjoyable things that you can still do. For example, you could make time to read a book, listen to some music or have a regular call with someone.

  • Try to establish a routine around bed time, to help set a regular sleeping pattern.
  • Try to eat regularly and drink plenty of water, if possible.
  • Try to keep active – go for a walk, chair yoga or check out the free on-line sessions on the Active Essex website.

You might find it helpful to a box of things that help you when you’re not feeling well, like having a first-aid kit for your mental health.

For example, this could include:

  • your favourite books or films
  • a stress ball or fiddle toy for releasing agitation
  • helpful quotes or notes of encouragement
  • pictures or photos you find comforting
  • a soft blanket or cuddly toy
  • a nice-smelling candle or lavender bag.

Help is here

If you are experiencing difficulties, it’s OK to seek help – you are not wasting anyone’s time. 

At Thurrock and Brentwood Mind we have supported over 7000 people during the pandemic – adapting so that we can provide support by phone, email, video call or face-to-face if needed.  Our Wellbeing Zoom sessions have meant that people can get together and share their experiences and have fun – including tribute acts, guest speakers (veterans and complimentary therapies), music, craft and local farm animals!

A range of services are available to suit your needs; Wellbeing Planning & Activities (including gardening), Talking Therapies, Peer Mentoring & Support, Advocacy & Form Filling, Recovery College courses, Digital Befriending, Unpaid Carers, Youth Champions.    

We have a new Information, Advice and Support Hub in Grays Shopping Hall and our Charity Shop is now open, so pop in and see us next time you are passing. 

If you are experiencing a mental health crisis, please call 111 and select option 2 and you will be transferred to a mental health professional.

How can you get involved?

Our volunteers are vital for us to continue to reach our local community.  Volunteering at Thurrock & Brentwood Mind can be a really rewarding and useful experience – so if you have a few hours to spare, let us know. 

Why not become a member and give a voice to people who live with mental health problems by pushing for change, sharing your experiences and helping to shape our work.

Every penny makes a difference to local people, so donations are welcome.

If you would like to work for us, we currently have a number vacancies.

To find out more visit our website ThurrockandBrentwoodMind.org.uk or call 01375 391411.