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Irish in Britain’s Mental Health and Wellbeing Charter

Sarah Hughes, Chief Executive at the Centre for Mental Health, explains why she is supporting Irish in Britain’s Mental Health and Wellbeing Charter.

Our Charter in action

There are higher than average rates of mental illness and suicide in the Irish community in Britain, through our charter, we aim to facilitate collaboration across the sector to lead to better understanding and more effective responses for our community.

Here’s what people are saying about our training programmes:

“The course was very valuable and a really beneficial learning experience, delivered by an excellent instructor.”

“Excellent course, very informative. Particularly interested in the issues and areas of mental health that disproportionally affect the Irish abroad.”

“This was a very valuable and relevant course, which addressed a real need in these challenging times. Marie's ability to get across key messages and connect with her audience was really impressive.”

“Marie was a superb leader for this course. She guided us expertly through the course content, adding her own personal touch with relatable anecdotes and a gentle sense of humour, which helped to bring the information to life and keep us engaged throughout.

"She ensured everyone had an opportunity to contribute, and reflect in their own way. Her knowledge seemed endless and we could have easily gone into far more depth in a number of areas. I would wholeheartedly recommend Marie and this course.”


Irish in Britain's Mental Health and Wellbeing Charter can be downloaded HERE


Mental Health First Aid and mental health awareness training

Irish in Britain provides subsidised MHFA training to our members, corporate partners, sponsors and the general public. 

In these uncertain times, MHFA skills are ever more relevant to supporting our colleagues and the wider community to stay well. Delegates on the course develop an understanding of mental health and the factors that influence wellbeing, gain practical skills to identify the triggers and signs of mental health issues and increase their confidence to step in, reassure and support a person in distress.

In addition, digital delivery is safe and secure, flexible and sessions can be completed in the comfort of your own home.

We have already delivered multiple MHFA and mental health awareness courses to our members and partners.

Some of our feedback from participants

“This was a very valuable and relevant course, which addressed a real need in these challenging times. Marie's ability to get across key messages and connect with her audience was really impressive.”

“Excellent course, very informative. Particularly interested in the issues and areas of mental health that disproportionally affect the Irish abroad.”

Enquiries: for more information on upcoming training programmes visit our events page here.

If you would like to enquire about booking a training programme, please contact health@irishinbritain.org

Resilience and Wellbeing Events

Prior to the pandemic, we ran in-person mental health and wellbeing awareness events.

Find our more here:

·       London Rose wellbeing talk

·       Gam Aware

·       DIL walk

Since the beginning of the lockdown, we have adapted to delivering our awareness sessions online.  We have hosted a number of different complimentary webinars to support the resilience of our members organisations and the general public.

The topics included:

·       Building resilience during challenging times

·       Nutrition and mental health

·       Stress management and mental health awareness

·       Financial mental health and wellbeing

Here’s what people are saying about our resilience webinars:

“Thank you so much for the training today it was excellent, and I will be sharing lots with my team. Well done!”

 “I just wanted to say thank you for your webinar today. I took a lot from it and will certainly be thinking about how I can build my resilience.”

Enquiries

If you would like to enquire about booking a training programme, please contact health@irishinbritain.org

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (ED&I)

Tackling and reducing health inequalities means giving everyone the same opportunities to lead a mentally and physically healthy and fulfilling life, no matter where they live or who they are. 

As part of our efforts to promote ED&I, we commissioned two important training events:

Disability Awareness

This is delivered in partnership with the Kaleidoscope Group and focuses on disability awareness. The session was hosted by Adam Pearson, an award-winning disability rights campaigner, actor, presenter and speaker.

The learning outcome of the session is to provide you with a greater knowledge and understanding of disability.

Topics covered include:

·       The definition of disability

·       Current disability landscape and the Size of the disability ‘market’

·       Addressing three barriers: attitudes, accessibility and language

·       Understanding unconscious bias and how it can affect us all

·       Sharing real life experiences of people with disability

·       The importance of disclosing your disability and asking for support

·       The benefits of working with disabled people

GRT Mental Health Awareness

The second one is Mental Health Awareness training for the staff and volunteers of our GRT member organisations.

Mental ill-health and suicide have higher prevalence for Irish Travellers, in addition to their low life expectancy and poor health profile.

The course aims to provide the staff and volunteers within GRT organisations with the skills, knowledge and confidence to effectively respond to the particular needs of this community.

Representation

The primary aim of our charter is to provide representation for the Irish community through our policy and public affairs portfolio. We will also ensure that Irish community interests are heard within national mental health consultations and advocate for culturally sensitive mental health service design and delivery.

In July 2021 we participated in a consultation ran by Greater London Authority on the role of the third sector during the pandemic and the challenges facing our sector in the recovery phase.  We have also contributed to the commission to investigate inequalities in mental health and recommendations to advance system changes for equality.

You can read more about our submission here.

Community Alliances

The Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) is Ireland's largest sporting organisation. Gaelic games are not only played by members of the Irish Diaspora; they are played and enjoyed by those who have no links to Ireland and simply love the games.

The GAA has long played a central role in the lives of Irish people at home and abroad, its unique reach across community means it’s well placed to help promote key messages to the Irish diaspora. 

Irish in Britain teamed has up with GAA clubs to promote mental health and heart health awareness in the GAA community in Britain.

Our work with the GAA includes delivering:

·       MHFA and mental health awareness training

·       Resilience webinars

·       Resus and defib training

·       Blood pressure awareness training (find out more about our heart health campaign here)

Here’s what the GAA community are saying about our training programmes:

“I thoroughly enjoyed the course this morning. Marie was very welcoming and extremely knowledgeable. It will help with my work/home life and with the community projects that I am involved in. I will definitely recommend to anyone who will listen to me! The taster session has spurred me on to get involved with more in-depth courses in the future.”

“Very informative and interactive. I really enjoyed the course and to learn of other people’s experiences. I thought Marie delivered the workshop extremely well and was very personable whilst relating to the material. I was engaged from start to finish, taking notes as I went.

"I'll be passing on all coping mechanism to my GAA Club and will be recommending the course to the managers, especially for the underage teams. I have also learned a lot for myself today, which in turn, will assist me in helping others better.”

Resources

·       Statistics on the mental health of the Irish population in Britain

·       Stress container model

·       Supporting mental health and wellbeing during lockdown

News stories

·       International Stress Awareness week 2020

·       Mental Health Awareness Week 2021

·       World Suicide Prevention Day

 Podcasts

·       Conor stone podcast