February 2021 Newsletter

We welcome you to our February E-bulletin to once again share the work we’re doing at CPSL Mind, alongside our many partners, across our local communities to maintain positive wellbeing and offer support during this challenging time.

In this edition we’re proud to connect you to our Annual Impact Report (2019/20) which focuses on the impact of our work as against our strategic goals, together with the extraordinary efforts of our fundraisers and campaigners.

February marks LGBT+ History Month and has provided the perfect opportunity to share the experiences of two LGBTIQ+ individuals – Cici and Mia – who have experienced poor mental health, in part, resulting from the negative actions of others. Inclusivity and respect are important values of ours and the experiences of Cici and Mia serve as a reminder of how hurtful it can be when people do not embody these. The language we use and the attitudes we have towards others makes a bigger impact than we may even realise.

We’ll also explore how small acts of kindness towards ourselves and our environment can support our wellbeing, sharing details of our #GoodMoodSaturdays feature on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire, opportunities to get involved with running events, campaigning and ways to support our environment.

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: www.cpslmind.org.uk or contact us on enquiries@cpslmind.org.uk

Aly Anderson
Chief Executive Officer

LGBT+ History Month and Mental Health

Those of us who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans or do not fit into traditional categories of gender or sexuality (LGBTIQ+) are statistically more likely to experience a mental health problem compared to the rest of the population. This LGBT+ History Month, we spoke with two local people – Cici and Mia – to discuss the relationship between their LGBTIQ+ identity and mental health.

It’s important to stress that being LGBTIQ+ does not cause mental health problems and the reasons those of us who identify in this way are more likely to experience them are complex. It is often linked with external factors such as facing stigma, discrimination, social isolation or exclusion and difficult experiences in ‘coming out’. Embracing your LGBTIQ+ identity can also have a positive impact on wellbeing as we’ll explore.

Find out about Cici and Mia’s experiences…

#GoodMoodSaturdays on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire

Each weekend, throughout February and March 2021, members of the CPSL Mind team will be joining Kev Lawrence on his BBC Radio Cambridgeshire breakfast show for #GoodMoodSaturdays.

Tune in at 9.20am each Saturday to hear positive conversations about mental health including lots of tips for how to stay well and information about local services. In particular, we’re encouraging people to join our online Good Mood Cafes on Zoom to connect with others in the community.

It’s OK not to be OK, so you don’t have to be in a good mood to come along to our Good Mood Cafe – but we hope everyone will leave the Good Mood Cafes feeling better than when they arrived.

Our 2019/20 Impact Review

We’re proud to share with you our Annual Impact Review 2019/20: Delivering on our Strategy, which you can view in full here.

Our Chair of Trustees, Alan Tait, introduces the review saying, “This year has seen us get into the stride of our strategy and deliver on our goals by increasing access to support and self-help through existing and new services; particularly the new Good Life service, open to all and establishing connections in the heart of communities. Enabling people to maintain positive health has been further enhanced through co-production, putting those with lived experience at the very centre of everything we do.

Early in 2020 positive mental health was truly challenged by the pandemic. We have adapted, tested, learned and shared our knowledge, in order to inspire all individuals with information about wellbeing and encourage vital connectivity with others. You will read from human stories and innovation described in this review that we focus on our values; collaboration across the health system, respect and compassion for others and our own mental health at a difficult time, along with courage in our operational decisions to ensure our support has remained available.

Run for Better Mental Health in 2021

We all know that physical activity can positively impact our mental health by improving our mood, helping our sleep and reducing the risk of depression.

Take advantage of the opportunities we have available this year to be part of two major local running events through which you can fundraise with us to support mental health for others as well as yourself.

You can enter the Run Everyone virtual running challenge in March, joining forces with friends, family or colleagues to form a team to take on a competition for all abilities. Then in October, you can join the impressive TTP Cambridge Half Marathon closed road route through the historic city of Cambridge.

Find out more and sign up… 

You Said, We Did

We work closely with members of our community to enhance the impact of our work and often receive insightful feedback we can act on. ‘You Said, We Did’ features a snapshot of one example to demonstrate how you have made a difference.

Last year, our STOP Suicide Campaign Makers told us that they would benefit from an online toolkit of training, resources and ideas to support their efforts to raise awareness of suicide prevention as part of our STOP Suicide campaign.

So that’s exactly what we created together, a STOP Suicide Induction Toolkit which is available to all existing and new Campaign Makers. Although we cannot currently physically campaign in the community, our toolkit has been put to good use as we build the knowledge and skills in our community to raise awareness safely online and in the media.

If you’re interested in becoming a STOP Suicide Campaign Maker and getting your hands on our STOP Suicide Induction Toolkit, please visit our website to sign up.

If you have any ideas or feedback you’d like to share with us about any of our work, please email this to enquiries@cpslmind.org.uk

Taking Care of our Environment

Spending time in green space or bringing nature into our everyday lives has been found to have lots of positive effects on our mental wellbeing. At CPSL Mind, we’re striving to ensure that we’re looking after our environment just as much as it looks after us.

Over the past year we’ve been able to celebrate some green successes as we’ve transitioned to many of our staff working from home. For example:

  • During 2020 we saw a reduction in printer paper usage alone that amounted to 40,000 sheets or, approximately, four mature trees.
  • Annual car fuel use is predicted to have dropped from 5,037 gallons (176,311 miles approx) to 1,918 gallons (67,144 miles) this financial year (ending March 2021). That’s a saving of around 3000 gallons – or enough to fill 4.5 petrol tankers or 71 standard bath tubs!

We now want to build on that, and have established a new environmental group that meets regularly. The aim is to keep up the momentum around greener choices at both organisational and personal level, while also looking at how to support individuals both within CPSL Mind and across our community with the emotional impact of Climate Change.

If you have any ideas around this, please do get in touch with us at enquiries@cpslmind.org.uk

Our Fantastic Fundraisers

We want to say a huge thank you to all of our fundraisers, who continue to make amazing contributions to support local mental health. Here are just a few examples:

Local networking hub, Shifties, founded by St Neots entrepreneur Alex Hughes, hosted a 24-hour online Speak Up Liveathon on Monday 18th January (known as Blue Monday) connecting the local business community and raising £5,000 to support our work.

William Whitney, a young man from St Neots, tragically took his own life in 2020. His loved ones, including dad Steve, were left devastated. Determined to do something in his memory, Steve, as Captain of St Neots Golf Club, organised a Charity Captain’s Day raising £14,000.

If you feel inspired to raise funds to support our work please visit cpslmind.org.uk/join-us/fundraise-for-us and get in touch.