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Mental Health Awareness week runs from the 18th-24th of May. It is hosted by the Mental Health Foundation, but many other organisations support it and take part.

It is the UK’s national week to raise awareness of  mental health problems and aims to encourage us to take action and promote good mental health for all.

This year, the theme is ‘Kindness’ which has been chosen in response to the coronavirus outbreak.

Why kindness?

They want to celebrate the acts of kindness we have seen through the pandemic. Whilst also raising awareness of why kindness is important for good mental health.

Research has shown that kindness creates a sense of belonging, and can reduce feelings of isolation (*).

It also:

  • Reduces stress
  • Deepens friendships
  • Boosts self-esteem
  • Improves confidence and optimism

We have seen acts of kindness all around in the covid-19 outbreak. From feeling inspired by Captain Tom Moore’s fundraising for the NHS, to neighbours reaching out to those who may not ask for help, but need it. Amid fear, there is a strong sense of community and support.

How can you get involved?

The aim of this awareness week is to get people talking. You can join in online, through the hashtag #KindnessMatters or #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek.

The Mental Health Foundation have also launched movement challenge during May. They are asking people to be active for 30 minutes a day, in line with research showing physical activity can improve mental health.

References:

(*) https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/campaigns/mental-health-awareness-week/why-kindness-theme