Celebrating Mental Health Awareness Week

Celebrating Mental Health Awareness Week

This year the theme for Mental Health Awareness Week is Nature and how connecting with the natural world can support good mental health.

Here at Sapphire, we’re proud to support the UK’s national week to raise awareness of mental health.

The week, which is hosted by the Mental Health Foundation, is in its 21st year and runs from 10-16 May. Across the country, people will be celebrating the mental health benefits of being around nature in their local community in a range of digital and creative ways.

At Sapphire we will be taking part in some of the below activities:

  • There are Nature journals available to anyone who’d like to sketch or write down anything they are experiencing.
  • We will have a nature photography competition! – Get snappy – the best will win a prize!
  • Commit to walking for at least 30 minutes outside at lunch each day. Take a buddy and get chatting!
  • Smell the flowers, listen to the birds and just be present, take some long slow breaths.
  • Take part in the 30-day mental health challenge and cross off each completed day.
  • If you don’t need a screen for your meeting, move it to a walking meeting.
  • Read through the managing stress info that will be up around the office.
  • A 45-minute loop starting from the office and back to get those steps in!
  • Read through and complete some of the ideas for kindness document – pick out a few, or 1 for each day and spread some kindness.
  • Take the NHS mind plan quiz, it’ll send you tips depending on your results
  • Pick up one of the mindful colouring sheets, zone out for 5.
  • Listen to a mindfulness podcast.
  • Eat lunch outside, weather permitting, get a small group together and have a picnic.
  • Get talking about mental health at work, ask open-ended questions, listen to your colleagues.

Mark Rowland Chief Executive of the Mental Health Foundation said: “Mental Health Awareness Week has grown to be one of the biggest awareness weeks in the UK.

This year the theme is on nature and its central role in our mental health. Since the beginning of the pandemic, millions of us turned to nature to help us get through lockdowns and our research shows that good mental health depends on us being able to connect with nature in some way and its power in both prevention of and recovery from poor mental health.

During the week, we want to hear millions of people’s stories about how the natural world has supported their mental health. We also want to highlight the huge disparities between who is and who isn’t able to access nature. We want the week to explore how everyone across the UK can connect with nature and experience the mental health benefits wherever they live.”

Some of the ways people can participate in Mental Health Awareness Week:

  • During Mental Health Awareness Week, why not try to make a habit each day of connecting to nature in your local area? Stop to listen to the birdsong, smell the freshly cut grass, take care of a house plant, notice any trees, flowers or animals nearby. Take a moment to appreciate these connections.
  • Share images/videos/or just sound recordings of nature on your doorstep (and how this made you feel) on social media using #ConnectWithNature and #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek
  •   Use Mental Health Foundation resources in your family, school, workplace and community to join with thousands of people who will be finding new ways to connect with nature in their local environment.

For more information about this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week and how you can get involved too, please visit mentalhealth.org.uk/mhaw or join the conversation on social media using #ConnectWithNature and #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek