Update: BAFTA winning TV director and leading writer to join expert panel debating What Works in Wellbeing.
“How can we promote good mental health and wellbeing?” is the timely question being debated at a major conference in south London this month.
The ground-breaking Bridge charity, which supports people with mental health issues, is marking its 30th anniversary by inviting leading experts and campaigners to discuss the latest thinking in mental health and wellbeing.
The event at Devonport House, Greenwich on Thursday, 23rd February is free to attend and some tickets are still available.
Among the speakers will be broadcaster, writer and mental health campaigner Rachel Kelly, and TV director Peter Beard, who’ll talk about his BAFTA winning Channel Four series Bedlam, based in South London & Maudsley NHS Psychiatric Hospital.
Keynote speaker Rachel, a former Times journalist who has written three books about coping strategies after suffering serious depressive episodes in her thirties, is currently working with the Wellcome Foundation on an event about the effects of nutrition on mental health.
“What is brilliant about the Bridge conferenceis that people with different areas of expertise are coming together to share best practice,” said Rachel.
“I’ve learned over the past ten years that there are very good evidence-strategies for different approaches to mental health problems.
“One size does not fit all. Being able to pull together different people to share their research and different approaches has got to be the future.”
The Bridge conference is being held a month after Prime Minister Theresa May announced a new government initiative to “transform” attitudes to mental health. Government figures show that one in four people have a mental health problem at some point in their life, with an annual cost of £105bn.
Debating this and others issues will be Emily Frith, of the Education Policy Institute who ran the Equality for Mental Health campaign with Norman Lamb MP; Dr Antonis Kousoulis, who heads research at the Mental Health Foundation; Dr Sarah Fleche of the leading-edge Wellbeing Programme at the London School of Economics, and Steve Gilbert, a leading mental health campaigner who has personal experience of severe mental health problems.
Bridge, which assists more than 1,000 people a year in the Royal Borough of Greenwich, is delighted to be bringing so many experts together to discuss this timely issue.
“Our clients’ wellbeing is at the heart of what we do and why we do it,” said Bridge Chief Executive Officer, Raymond Sheehy, who will chair the conference.
“Since 1987, Bridge has been driven by a deep passion to ensure our clients receive the best quality support and today we have become one of the biggest provider of mental health services in Greenwich.”
“On 23rd February, we are inviting people to join us as we share our experience, along with other experts, on what really works in supporting those with mental health problems to become the best of themselves, and to discuss the future of mental health and wellbeing services.”
Bridge works in partnership with NHS trusts, local authorities, clinical commissioning groups and social enterprises to ensure their clients have the best chance of recovery. They assist those with mental health needs to gain more choice and independence in their lives.
Mr Sheehy explained: “We empower our clients to fulfil their potential, giving them the right support at the right time until full independence is achieved. Our staff are carefully selected for their expertise and passion enabling us to provide a quality, life-changing service.”