It’s Time to Talk

Poppy Jaman CEO City Mental Health Alliance

Ian Hamilton, senior lecturer in mental health at the University of York and registered mental health nurse, says we shouldn't let awkwardness get in the way.

"Social media can be an incredible, connective place but a "like", or even hundreds of "likes", can't replace conversation", she said. "Social media can be an awesome, connective place but a "like", or even hundreds of "likes", can't replace conversation. Every conversation counts and can make a difference which is why I am supporting time to talk". "To literally have a shoulder to cry on is one of the best gifts I've received from my friends".

Almost 4,000 workplaces and thousands of schools and community groups will take part in Time to Talk Day.

While social media allows people to connect with those around them and can be a helpful source of support for the one in four who experience mental health problems in any given year, according to campaigners, the new data suggests "surface level" engagement, such as liking photos or checking friends' profiles is replacing more meaningful conversation, both on and offline. "However, doing so connected me with an unbelievable community of people I'd never met who became great friends and a great support". This corporate apathy felt by employees arrives at a time when awareness of mental health issues in the United Kingdom is on the rise.

Jo Loughran, director of Time to Change added: "We are delighted that McVitie's is contributing to our Time to Talk Chatter Box initiative, helping us to provide the right tools for people to open up to mental health problems, talk and to listen".

Time to Talk Day is an annual campaign encouraging everyone to open up conversations about mental health, whether at home, in the workplace, in sports clubs or in schools.

Celebrity supporters such as Dame Kelly Holmes, Dr Ranj Singh and Matt Johnson have taken part in kick starting a social media campaign whereby supporters are asked to share their "key ingredient" for a meaningful conversation about mental health. Only a third of men (34 per cent) would talk openly about their feelings, while just under one third (31 per cent) said that they would be embarrassed about seeking help for a mental health problem.

The Lethbridge Hurricanes teamed up with the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) Alberta South Region during Tuesday night's Western Hockey League game against the Regina Pats to raise awareness about the importance of mental health within the sporting community. Join in the conversation online using the hashtag #timetotalk or visiting the website.

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