Lobby group launches pilot projects in bid to help end stigma around mental health

Mad Pride Ireland is going to work in two Cork communities to help end the stigma surrounding mental health issues.

The lobby group is poised to launch pilot projects — one in Douglas and the other on the rugged Beara peninsula — that will engage with the local communities, identify particular mental health needs specific to each area, and apply unique solutions to them.

The DIY Mental Health projects, supported by the HSE, aim to normalise the conversation around mental wellbeing.

Mad Pride issued an open invitation for people to attend a meeting in Douglas Community Hall on Oct 17, and at The Lounge in Castletownbere on Oct 22 at 8.30pm, where the projects will be outlined.

David McCarthy of Mad Pride Ireland said the organisation hoped the project would bring the community together to talk about mental health and the wider issue of wellbeing.

“We have invited people from mental health groups, sports clubs, the Credit Union, post offices, and publicans as well as concerned citizens and others,” he said.

“Our hope is that bringing this variety of voices together will allow us to not only identify problems on the peninsula but also to design solutions that will work for this area.”

Mr McCarthy said they were not arriving in to the communities with an idea of what would happen.

He said they would work with the community to help them generate their own solutions.

“We hope the DIY Mental Health Project will not only help to normalise the conversation on mental health but that it will also help build a stronger community and stronger connections across it,” he said.

* www.madprideireland.ie

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