The NHS, local authorities and members of the voluntary and community sector across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland (LLR) are working together to increase and promote the help that is in place for people to support their mental health and wellbeing over winter. It is part of the wider ‘Get in the Know’ Campaign that was recently launched by the NHS in LLR which is aiming to help local people to get the right care as quickly as possible.

In support of this, the NHS, working with the local authorities and voluntary sector partners, have produced new promotional materials that will help people to find the support they need for their mental health and wellbeing more quickly. These include a directory with details of who to contact for help, a crisis café leaflet showing where the cafes are and their opening times and posters and business cards to promote key services.

John Edwards, Associate Director for Transformation for mental health in the NHS, said: “We are joining forces with our partners to do this promotion because we want to spread the message that it is OK to ask for help and then make it easy for people to find the help they need.  It’s never been more important as we head into this winter when services are stretched and more people are affected by the cost of living crisis that people can get mental health support easily.”

The campaign is launching on Monday 28 November and will be promoting the ‘front doors’ to enable people to get the support for their mental health and wellbeing, as well as all the many other services that are already there to help, including who to contact in a mental health crisis.

Helen Carter, CEO of the Loughborough Wellbeing Centre, is one of the voluntary sector partners working with the NHS to provide more support for people who are struggling with mental and wellbeing issues. Helen said: “We are already finding that people are needing more support from us than before. We are now helping people with access to warm spaces, food banks, accommodation and money issues – elements of life that contribute to people’s stress and anxiety. We will be promoting these new leaflets and posters to our audiences so that people can easily get more help from other providers.”

Two ‘front doors’ that will be promoted in the campaign are the Mental Health Wellbeing and Recovery Service (MHWRSS) and the Talking Therapy Service. Both services can be contacted directly, without the need to get a referral from a GP or other professional.  The MHWRSS offers support to people on a range of issues such as finances, home and daily living needs, engaging in the community, employment and developing self-help and coping strategies. VitaMinds provides the talking Therapy Service which can support people with a range of mental health needs.

When people need help in a mental health crisis, there are two more services that they can contact direct: the Crisis Cafes and the Central Access Point, a 24/7 phoneline run by Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust, available on 0808 800 3302. Once again, there is no need to see a GP first, people can contact both and speak to someone.

Please visit the helpful documents for your mental health webpage to find out more about the support and how to access it.