18th May marks the start of Mental Health Awareness Week 2020 in the UK and this year’s theme is kindness

The focus on kindness and looking out for each other is a response to the coronavirus outbreak, which is having a big impact on people's mental health.

 Mental Health Organisations are  encouraging everyone to reach out to someone who needs a friend with a positive message and make sure they don’t have to face this pandemic alone.  The ‘new normal’ has changed the way we live, the way we work. We’re feeling emotional and missing family, friends and colleagues. We’re using words like ‘Covid-19’, ‘lockdown’ and ‘social distancing’ at a time when we all need comfort and kindness the most.

There is support for people who are finding life a struggle and who need a helping hand and I remind staff of the resources detailed on the following page.

The charity Mind has some valuable resources and information on their site and this can be accessed by clicking on the following link.  (If you click on contents in the top left hand corner you can access the menu.)

The BBC have the following link, which is aimed at young people and has excellent information and an important message to all of us on the importance of being kind and the benefits it has to our mental health

We cannot forget our colleagues in the Health and Social Care Sector at this challenging time and acknowledge that support and wellbeing resources are vitally important to you all.  A “National Wellbeing Hub”, has been developed specifically for you and has been developed on the principles of Psychological First Aid. It includes information on self-care and recognising your own “warning signs”, and can be accessed by the whole Health and Social Care Workforce including unpaid carers, volunteers and their families.  This valuable new resource has just been launched by Clare Haughey MSP, Minister for Mental Health, and this Hub can be found at www.promis.scot

I hope you find these resources useful and please share them as widely as you like and if you line manage staff with no computer access, please ensure this information is shared.

Take care and be kind.

Alison M Skea

Learning & Development Manager

School Place, Kirkwall, Orkney, KW15 1NY

Telephone: 01856 873535

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