Mental Health Awareness Week 2020

Content originally from The Essex Alliance

Mental Health Awareness Week is an annual campaign which aims to get people talking about their mental health and reduce the stigma around mental illness.

Research from Time to Change found that 9 out 10 people have faced stigma due to mental illness, and this stigma can have a negative impact on recovery time.

For 2020, the theme of Mental Health Awareness Week is kindness.

Find Services Near You

The Essex Map is a community asset map which aims to help people to find the groups, services, and activities which work to benefit the community. The website can be used to find guidance and counselling for a variety of mental illnesses, and there are over 130 listings dedicated to emotional and mental health.

For more information, please visit:

Online Mental Health Courses

Mind in West Essex have built a dedicated online learning platform, designed to help you understand and manage the symptoms of common mental illnesses.

The Mind in West Essex Academy includes a free course on Intro to Anxiety, as well as courses for parents and carers of both young children and teenagers to support their emotional wellbeing.

More courses will be added in the coming weeks, and are due to include topics on working from home, depression, sleep, and stress.

For more information, please visit:

Free Digital Support Groups

In response to the coronavirus outbreak, Mind in West Essex have adapted the services they offer and have created support groups using Zoom.

Sessions are available for stress/anxiety and bereavement, and will consist of a 1-hour session per week for 6 weeks, facilitated by 2 members of Mind in West Essex staff.

Stress/Anxiety Groups:

  • Tuesdays 10:30-11:30
  • Thursdays 10:30-11:30

Bereavement Group:

  • Thursdays 11:00 -12:00

Spaces for these groups are limited. For more information, and to book your place, please call 01371 876641 or email

Accessible Counselling

To help people who are self-isolating and want to talk to someone about their mental health, Mind in West Essex have adapted their counselling sessions so they can be accessed via telephone or video call.

For people with a hearing loss, the systems have been tested to work with a variety of speech-to-text applications including Phonak’s myCall-to-Text phone transcription app.

For more information, please call 01371 876641 or visit

Free Befriending Service

For those who don’t want to have a formal conversation around their mental health, but are feeling isolated or lonely, Essex Befriends offer a free befriending service facilitated by volunteers.

During the coronavirus outbreak face-to-face befriending has been temporarily stopped, however telephone and email befriending is still available.

Essex Befriends is a cooperative project from Action for Family Carers, Mind in West Essex, Independent Age and Hamelin Trust.

For more information, please call 0300 770 1263, email, or visit