Autumn 2020 Newsletter

We welcome you to our Autumn E-bulletin with lots of positive news to share as we continue to find ways of reaching out across our communities at this extraordinary time.

We are proud and privileged to be directly supporting around 500 people a week with their mental health, while hundreds more are engaged in our awareness-raising, skills-enhancing campaigns and training activities.

One of the highlights of our work has been seeing the impact our services have had in providing support remotely, while we also find safe and effective ways to return to those all-important face-to-face interactions. Although the global Covid-19 situation may be uncertain, what is certain is that we’re still able to provide exceptional support for our community.

For a powerful example of this please see Conor’s story below, which Conor generously shared at our virtual Annual General Meeting (AGM), in which he tells how contact with the extended Lifeline helpline service helped save his life.

Speaking of our AGM, this year marked some changes to our Board of Trustees as we welcomed the appointment of our new Chair, Alan Tait. Please see below for an introduction to Alan and other new appointments to our Board.

Other changes in this period include saying a fond farewell to our office base in St Neots, as our lease there comes to an end. While this is a sad goodbye in many ways, after so many years, this move will enable us to focus our resources more effectively while continuing to provide high quality services to the people of St Neots and the Huntingdonshire district.

We’re delighted to let you know that we have been announced as winners of the ‘Service User Influence and Participation’ award at the national Mind Excellence Awards, alongside being highly commended in the ‘Service Design and Innovation’ category. We’re very proud of the fact that the voices of individuals with lived experience of mental health issues profoundly influence everything we do and these accolades, which you can read about below, demonstrate our commitment to Co-Production.

Our Campaigns Team recently launched a new phase of our STOP Suicide campaign, focused both on men’s mental health and our local Eastern European communities. Both areas of the campaign have had an impressive reach and we urge you to check out our men’s suicide prevention podcast below for a powerful insight into this important work.

We again pay tribute to the many fantastic fundraisers who continue to support our work. Among those featuring in this edition are a human sunflower, a father-son kayak team and a cheerleading cat named Julius!

If you would like to know more about our work, to access our services or maybe get involved in some other way, please see our website: or contact us on

Warmest wishes,

Aly Anderson
Chief Executive Officer

Winner of a National Mind Excellence Award

We’re thrilled to announce that we have been named as winner of the 2020 national Mind Excellence award for ‘Service User Influence and Participation’ – and Highly Commended in the category of ‘Service Design and Innovation’.

This is fantastic recognition of the contribution which has been made to developing our services by individuals with lived experience of mental health challenges – particularly through our Co-Production Team and peer support work. This award recognises the exciting journey that CPSL Mind has undertaken to embed Co-Production across our organisation.

Our Co-Production Team now meet regularly to influence, innovate and challenge the rest of the organisation, playing a major role in all aspects of our work from strategy to campaigns to service design. In addition, many other individuals with lived experience, from across our communities, are also involved in the development of services as well as in providing all-important peer support.

Rhi, a member of our Co-Production Team, says, “It is so much fun, buzzing with so many ideas and thinking about how we can make it happen. Then when you see things happen like our Good Life leaflets, the Wellbeing Wheel and our Good Mood Cafes, you think ‘that was us!’.”

Find out more about our Co-Production Team and how lived experience influences our work…

Get the News from our AGM

Thank you to everyone who attended our 47th Annual General Meeting (AGM) virtually on Tuesday 25th August 2020 as we celebrated the impact of our work and welcomed a new chair to our Board of Trustees.

This year marked some significant changes to our Board, in particular the appointment of our new Chair, Alan Tait (pictured left). Alan brings huge experience both as an educator and as a carer of relatives with mental health challenges.

He takes the reins from Stuart Jessup (pictured above right) who has played a vital role during a period of change for our charity. Stuart has inspired many with his open approach to talking about his own mental health challenges and has been an invaluable support to our Training Team over the years. We’d like to thank Stuart again and are delighted to report that he will continue with us as a trustee.

Two other new appointments saw Andréa Grosbois formally voted in as Vice-Chair and Maria Huber confirmed as Treasurer.

Find out more about Alan – our new Chair – and see a full list of Trustees…

Our Impact: Conor’s Story

One of the highlights of the AGM was celebrating the impact of our work and one poignant example of this was Conor’s story which you can watch below.

Conor was supported to stay safe by the a call-hander on the extended Lifeline helpline service which we have supported Lifecraft to deliver during the current pandemic. You can read more about Lifeline here.

Listen to Conor’s inspiring story:

Launching our STOP Suicide Men’s Campaign

A new phase of our award-winning suicide prevention campaign – STOP Suicide – launched on World Suicide Prevention Day featuring open conversations from local men with lived experience of suicidal thoughts.

Suicide remains the biggest killer of men under 45 in the UK and our campaign has been striving to break down barriers which prevent male conversations about mental health and suicide; encouraging people to directly approach the subject if they’re concerned about someone.

A main feature of the campaign is the real conversation between two local men – Joe and Stu – about their experiences of suicide which you can watch as a podcast below. We aim to normalise these types of conversations and direct people to our available resources which include information on how to notice warning signs and talk about suicide.

The socially-distanced launch took place at the Shedders and Fixers men’s community group in Wisbech on Thursday 10th September and was attended by sections of the media including a team from BBC Look East. In addition to appearing on local TV, STOP Suicide featured on several radio stations and in several newspapers across the month of September as well as on social media.

Find out more about the launch and visit our STOP Suicide website…

Watch our men’s conversational podcast about suicide prevention:

Reaching Our Diverse Communities

As part of our STOP Suicide campaign, we have worked closely with our local Eastern European communities – Poles, Lithuanians and Romanians – to develop messages and multi-lingual resources with the aim of raising awareness and encouraging open conversations around the subject of suicide prevention.

Throughout our targeted digital campaigning across May and June 2020, our messages reached 57,000 Eastern Europeans on Facebook, featured in nine media publications and as adverts on selected websites.

We attracted 3,269 Eastern Europeans, local to Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, to visit our website where our translated resources could be downloaded in PolishLithuanian and Romanian.

The key messages of our targeted campaign were based on our existing STOP Suicide communications and tested in February 2020 with members of our local Eastern European communities through market research interviews.

Find out more…

Our Fantastic Fundraisers

We want to say a huge thank you to all our dedicated fundraisers, who have continued to make amazing contributions during the pandemic. Here are just a few:

Johnson Matthey Cambridge Fundraising Team undertook a week of activities from 22nd-26th June with games and raffles to encourage donations. Their team challenge throughout the month of June was to “Race Around the Johnson Matthey (JM) sites” by either walking, cycling, or running the equivalent distance between each JM site in the UK & Ireland starting from JM in Cambridge. They exercised an incredible 1,308 miles!

Read more…

On Monday the 24th August, Peter Emeleus and his son Harry paddled from Buckden where they live, to Ely along the Great River Ouse, a distance of over 30 miles. Henry, Corrine and Julius the cat cheered them along and were their support crew all the way to the finish.

Read more…

If you feel inspired to raise funds to support our work please visit and get in touch.