The theme for World Mental Health Day this year is Mental Health in an Unequal World. CASS works with both mental health services, and with a wide range of diverse local groups, and through this we are aware of not just the inequalities in mental health access and provision globally, but on a more local level here in Bristol. Our equalities work focuses mainly on groups with protected characteristics under the Equality Act, but there are many other groups who may face barriers to accessing services: low-income families, homeless people or those in insecure housing, people with different language needs, single parents, and carers. And accessing mental health support may not be the end of the story; mental health stigma and discrimination is still a problem for many people, leading to difficulties in ongoing care of their mental health, and worsening of existing issues.
Many local organisations have been working to address health inequalities for years. We’re aiming to use the weeks around WMHD this year to highlight the amazing work they do, whether that’s providing specific services for equality groups, or working with communities to challenge stigma around mental health.
CASS have consistently used our leaflets for equality communities to get out information on where to get emotional wellbeing support that’s specific to equality groups, and you can find and download these here. Similarly, we have a useful information section on our website which is split into sections around equality groups. For up to date information on free or low-cost events and activities to support your emotional wellbeing you can sign up to our monthly city-wide newsletter, or one of our locality newsletters that are sent out every other month, just email firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll add your name.
Bristol’s vibrant and responsive community spirit means there are always more grassroots and newly funded groups popping up, so if you know of a group we’re missing, please get in touch and let us know!
As well as highlighting local groups who work towards equality in mental health, we also have a new guided mindfulness audio on finding balance. If you're feeling a bit off-kilter, click here for our short mindfulness practice session.