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Staff at Suffolk Food Hall raise more than £1,200 for Suffolk Mind

Staff at the Suffolk Food Hall in Ipswich have completed a mammoth challenge of running every day for seven days to raise £1,268.84 for independent mental health charity Suffolk Mind.

Seven members of the team ran the distance on a treadmill in the exit lobby at the Food Hall in Wherstead in January.

Craig Bullard, event coordinator and butchery supervisor, organised the challenge: “It was a fantastic effort from everyone: the runners, the shop floor team promoting and supporting co-workers and all the customers who donated and motivated us throughout our event. The target was to raise as much money as possible, and I am so chuffed with our final figure and more importantly, raising awareness of the significance of Suffolk Mind in our county. 

“The idea of running 24 miles a day, 7 days a week was to try and emphasise how Suffolk Mind is working 24/7, helping individuals and groups across the whole spectrum of mental health. It was a way we could be there 24/7 for them.

“On a personal note, this charity means a lot to me so I’d like to thank Suffolk Food Hall for joining me in this experience to make it such a success. A massive thank you for all donations we received, the sound of coins or in fact notes being folded and put into the tin was the biggest motivation of all.”

Suffolk Food Hall has also announced that Suffolk Mind will be one of their chosen charities for 2019.

Craig continued: “The news that we are going to continue working with the charity this year just fills me with pride, it was an honour to represent Suffolk Mind and I look forward to the next adventure.”

Lizzy Tuthill, Community Fundraising Coordinator said: “We can’t thank the team at Suffolk Food Hall enough for completing such a tough challenge – nearly 7 marathons in as many days is an absolutely amazing achievement.

“It’s been a pleasure to work with Craig and the team and we are very proud of what they have achieved so far. We are so pleased that Suffolk Food Hall have chosen to support Suffolk Mind for the rest of the year with some new challenges and activities along the way and we look forward to building on the relationship and working together throughout 2019.

 “Money raised goes towards helping Suffolk Mind to achieve our aim of making Suffolk the best place in the world for talking about and taking care of mental health. Specifically support like this enables us to subsidise our counselling services, so they are available to people who can’t afford to wait or go private, and our ecotherapy projects, that get people out and about working on allotments, learning new skills and meeting up with like minded people.”

Author: Kristina Brinkley
Posted on: 15th February 2019


Suffolk Mind launches new Suffolk Young Dementia Network

Suffolk Mind is launching a new peer support group to help people who have traits or a diagnosis of young onset dementia.

The Suffolk Young Dementia Network comes off the back of a 6 month service launched by Suffolk Mind last summer, for people aged between 30 and 65 who are living with dementia in Suffolk.  Figures suggest that those who live with the condition may be up to 6-9% of all people with dementia. Overall in Suffolk, it is estimated that 12,800 people are living with dementia (1).

The group will be based in different areas of Suffolk on a monthly basis and is a gathering point for younger people with dementia and their carers to offer support to each other.

Peter Berry who will be using the Suffolk Young Dementia Network was diagnosed with dementia when he was 50 year’s old: “When I was told I had dementia, I didn’t think it was going to be that bad and I thought I could deal with it. However, when you get home and think about the enormity of what the future will hold, it lays heavy on your shoulders. I got very depressed and down about it, in the first 12 months, me and my wife hardly told anybody, I felt embarrassed.

“One of the key things that I and so many other people in my position lack is peer support; having some sort of network with people in the same age group is very important. Peer support networks don’t just help people with dementia, it can actually save lives. It can save people from depression; it can save families and give people a sense of worth. It gives people something to look forward to and for some it can be a light at the end of the tunnel.”

Peter’s wife Teresa Berry said: “This has been something that we’ve wanted for so long – I have never met a single person in Suffolk in the same boat as we are – it’s so isolating. To have a group that will hopefully grow and spread would be wonderful”.

The launch of the Suffolk Young Dementia Network is being held at DanceEast in Ipswich on Sunday 17th February 2019, 11am – 1pm. There will be a pop-up games café for all abilities and refreshments.

Sue Gray, Suffolk Young Dementia Network Co-ordinator said: “When you are younger than the perceived age to ‘get’ dementia it’s frightening to go to the doctor and explore why your memory and planning abilities seem to be changing – and then possibly being told that you have Dementia. Dementia is a life changing condition at any age but when you are young it is all the more difficult to take in and adjust to.

“We want people to be able to meet others in a similar situation – either face to face, via email or over the phone, and be able to exchange support and information.”

Author: Kristina Brinkley
Posted on: 13th February 2019


Suffolk Mind works with schools to improve mental health in young people

Suffolk Mind has been working with schools to help children understand more about their mental health.

The independent mental health charity is currently piloting a project called EARLY Minds (Emotional Awareness & Resilience Learnt Young) to teach young people (from Year 1 upwards), their teachers, parents and carers about their emotional needs and how to improve their wellbeing.

Charlie Green, the lead trainer on the EARLY Minds project at Suffolk Mind said: “This project is still in the development stages, but is already making a difference. The children are really engaging and enjoying what we teach and how we teach.

“One of our main aims is to raise awareness of what it means to be emotionally and physically well. It is interesting that if you ask any child from five upwards what a plant needs to be well, they can answer straight away – sunlight, water and food. But ask them about what humans need to be well and they are not so sure. This is what we aim to change across the county.

“EARLY Minds educates and inspires children by increasing their understanding of emotional wellbeing as well as teaching techniques to be able to calm strong emotions, think clearly and empathise with others. Through story telling, working in small groups and group discussions, the sessions are interactive, thought provoking and enjoyable for the children”.

Suffolk Mind has worked with schools such as Laureate Community Academy, Sidegate Primary, Saxmundham Primary and Holbrook Academy.

Nicola Shelley, Deputy Headteacher at Holbrook Academy said: “We approached Suffolk Mind whilst reflecting on what we currently offer in school to support young people’s mental health. 

“Straight away they were able to discuss their philosophy and offer us advice, guidance and practical support.  Suffolk Mind and Gecko Theatre Company ran a fantastic workshop with students at Holbrook during which young people could openly discuss and explore the issues affecting them”. 

Suffolk Mind is currently marking Children’s Mental Heath week (4th February – 10th February) by offering help and advice to parents and carers on social media. A blog and video have been released explaining a technique called dragon breathing, aimed to calm people down. Visit our Facebook and Twitter pages for more details.

Author: Kristina Brinkley
Posted on: 6th February 2019


Thousands raised for Suffolk Mind through RED January

Hundreds of people across the county have been raising money for Suffolk Mind by people getting active every day to beat the blues away.

Nearly 370 people around Suffolk have been involved in RED January 2019, a national initiative promoting the positive power exercise can have on our minds and wellbeing, during a characteristically tough month. So far over £7,000 has been raised for the charity as a result of the campaign.

Nicole Crown is a REDer and has been exercising every day throughout January: “January is a typically difficult month for me, it’s when I’m usually feeling my lowest and most anxious, having suffered with anxiety, depression and OCD on and off since I was a teenager. I have benefited from some of the therapies and services offered by Suffolk Mind to help me manage and cope when I have been feeling mentally unwell so RED January seemed a perfect opportunity to help combat those feelings and raise a bit of money for the charity.

“I have been doing a minimum of 30 minutes exercise every day varying from walking, yoga, Zumba, Burlesque Fit, Drum n Bass Fit, Bounce Fit and ParkRun to name a few. I wanted to try lots of different things to find something that I really enjoy and could carry on once RED January is over. 

“It’s been the best January I’ve had in several years and I can’t imagine not doing RED January going forwards.  I’m looking forward to what other challenges I can complete with the newfound belief I have in my ability to give anything a go”.

Alice Mcveigh, who’s originally from Suffolk, has been taking part in RED January from Dubai: “RED January has been a real achievement for me. It has made me try things I would never have done before. As a result, I have really got into yoga and been able to spend more time with friends. Being part of the RED community has really kept me going. I am looking forward to participating again next year!”

Nationally a number of celebrities have been involved in the campaign including presenter, Fearne Cotton. On her Instagram page she posted: “To everyone taking part in RED January you are an absolute inspiration! It’s been incredible to be a part of the RED community and see it grow over the years…there are now over 60,000 people around the UK getting active every day this January to support their mental health and at the same time, connecting as a community to inspire and support others by raising vital funds for Mind”.

RED January is founded on research that shows physical activity can reduce symptoms of mental illness such as depression and anxiety. In Suffolk, and across the UK, figures show one in four people will experience a mental health problem each year. In England, one in six people report experiencing a common mental health problem, such as anxiety and depression, in any given week.

Jon Neal, the Chief Executive of Suffolk Mind, has been taking part in RED January, getting people like West Suffolk MP, Secretary of State for Health, Matt Hancock involved. Jon has visited the Cambridge University rowing team, participated in Float Fit at Crown Pools in Ipswich, HIIT training at Brandon Leisure Centre, rugby in Woodbridge and even pole dancing at Henley Community Centre.

Money raised from campaigns such as RED January, helps Suffolk Mind to achieve our aim of making Suffolk the best place in the world for talking about and taking care of mental health.

Author: Kristina Brinkley
Posted on: 1st February 2019


Health Secretary and West Suffolk MP gets involved in RED January

The Health Secretary and MP for West Suffolk, Matt Hancock has taken part in a HIIT Class today as part of the RED January campaign for mental health charity, Suffolk Mind.

Mr Hancock is taking part in RED January himself, doing something every day to beat the blues away. Today’s activity took place at Brandon Leisure Centre, alongside Suffolk Mind Chief Executive, Jon Neal and Warren Smyth the Chief Executive of Abbeycroft Leisure.

Talking to Jon on a video for his YouTube channel, Mr Hancock said: “It (RED January) is fantastic for you, I feel so much better and it’s good for your mental health as well. The whole point of it tying together your physical and mental wellbeing, is so important”.

Suffolk Mind is partnering with RED January, a national initiative, promoting the positive power exercise can have on our minds and wellbeing, during a characteristically tough month. It’s founded on research that shows physical activity can reduce symptoms of mental illness such as depression and anxiety. In the post RED January 2018 survey, 87% of people who took part reported feeling significantly better physically and mentally, after getting active every day. 337 people have signed up to RED January for Suffolk Mind.

In Suffolk, and across the UK, figures show one in four people will experience a mental health challenge each year. In England, one in six people report experiencing a common mental health issue, such as anxiety or depression, in any given week.

Jon Neal, chief executive of Suffolk Mind said: “I am so pleased many people are involved in RED January for Suffolk Mind this year. Having the Health Secretary and organisations like Abbeycroft Leisure supporting our campaign is fantastic”.

During his RED January campaign, Jon has also been out running with Ipswich MP, Sandy Martin and has taken part in an exercise session with the Cambridge University rowing team, who are training for the big boat race against Oxford in April. 

Chief Coach of Cambridge University Boat Club, Rob Baker who was talking to Jon on a video for his YouTube channel said: “We’re slightly contained in our bubble here, and what we do with the boat club, but like everyone we’ve got top preforming athletes who have struggles and have some issues we have to deal with. But across the university its something they are looking at very closely and absolutely encouraging people to do sport and take part in exercise to help in that process. Even as a coach, who doesn’t do as much exercise as I’d like, when I do it’s a huge release and a helpful process”.

Author: Kristina Brinkley
Posted on: 18th January 2019


Registrations for RED January come from as far away as Dubai

A woman living in Dubai has signed up to the mental health campaign, RED January for Suffolk Mind, to get active every day to beat the blues away.

Alice Mcveigh who’s originally from Suffolk, heard about RED January from a friend. She is one of 367 people registered with Suffolk Mind to participate in some form of exercise every day to help with their mental health and wellbeing.

Alice said: “I am pleased to be able to raise awareness of mental health issues such as depression and promote exercise as a way to improve wellbeing and happiness.

“It is easy to think ‘I won’t have time for this’ when you are busy with work, but it is so important to make time for exercise; especially after the Christmas holiday where reality hits again”.

In Suffolk, and across the UK, figures show one in four people will experience a mental health challenge in any given year. In England, one in six people report experiencing a common mental health issue, such as anxiety and depression, each week.

RED January is founded on research that shows physical activity can reduce symptoms of mental illness such as depression and anxiety. In the post RED January 2018 survey, 87% of people who took part reported feeling significantly better physically and mentally, after getting active every day.

Alice continues: “I run two or three times a week but to do something every day is challenging, it is however a great cause and therefore I’m giving it my all”.

We are putting on free activities every weekday at Quay Place in Ipswich to help people get active every day. You can enjoy yoga, short tennis, Tai Chi, Wii Sports, and a walking group. For more details, visit our website.

Author: Kristina Brinkley
Posted on: 15th January 2019


Ipswich Town footballer highlights Suffolk Mind mental health campaign

An Ipswich Town footballer is involved in promoting RED January, a mental health campaign encouraging people to get active every day, to beat the blues away.

Suffolk Mind is partnering with RED January, a national initiative, promoting the positive power exercise can have on our minds and wellbeing, during a characteristically tough month. It’s founded on research that shows physical activity can reduce symptoms of mental illness such as depression and anxiety. In the post RED January 2018 survey, 87% of people who took part reported feeling significantly better physically and mentally, after getting active every day.

An event was held at Portman Road for people signed up to RED January. Dan Palfrey, Marketing & Public Relations Officer at Ipswich Town Football Club said: “We’re delighted to support RED January with Suffolk Mind as part of our broader partnership with the charity this season.

“Physical activity is hugely important for both physical and mental wellbeing, and we see that all the time at Ipswich Town FC. We really want to encourage all football supporters, family and friends to sign up to do a little exercise every day to help their mental health during what can sometimes be a challenging month.”

In Suffolk, and across the UK, figures show one in four people will experience a mental health challenge each year. In England, one in six people report experiencing a common mental health issue, such as anxiety or depression, in any given week.

Jodie Goolding has Borderline Personality Disorder and is taking part in RED January to help her own mental health, “I have suffered with both chronic illness and mental illness since my early teens. I haven’t always had the best relationship with exercise over the years – I would either engage in it too much or not do anything at all.

“So I’m doing RED January to give me motivation to maintain a healthy relationship with exercise and to keep moving even during those times where I feel like I can’t leave the house for days.

“During January I will vlog through the ups and downs of suffering with Borderline Personality Disorder, Endometriosis & Polycystic Kidney Disease in order to share my journey and awareness of these illnesses.”

Author: Kristina Brinkley
Posted on: 18th December 2018


Suffolk Mind launches mental health campaign, RED January

Suffolk Mind is warming up for RED January, a mental health campaign encouraging people to get active every day to beat the blues away.

In Suffolk, and across the UK, figures show one in four people will experience a mental health challenge in any given year. In England, one in six people report experiencing a common mental health issue, such as anxiety and depression, each week.

RED January is founded on research that shows physical activity can reduce symptoms of mental illness such as depression and anxiety. In the post RED January 2018 survey, 87% of people who took part reported feeling significantly better physically and mentally, after getting active every day.

To take part in RED January, all you need to do is register for free here, and then walk, run, swim (or anything you like) for however long you like – whether 5 minutes or 5k and beyond. Over 100 people have already registered for RED January in Suffolk.

You can also fundraise for Suffolk Mind as part of your RED January journey. The money raised supports our vital work in the local community, supporting mental health services and helping achieve our mission of making Suffolk the best place in the world for talking about and taking care of mental health.

Jon Neal, Chief Executive of Suffolk Mind is taking part again this year after raising £2,400 last year: “I was amazed when taking part in RED January last year, at the difference it made to my mental and physical health. I didn’t run far each day, but I was definitely a lot fitter by the end of the month and even managed to do a Park Run. I also lost a stone in weight, without changing what I ate.

“Typically some people struggle during January because of the dark nights, cold weather and Christmas being over, so taking part in RED January gives people a focus. A little exercise can be very helpful for staying mentally healthy”.

Author: Kristina Brinkley
Posted on: 23rd November 2018


MD of Beckett Investments, appointed Chair of Trustees at Suffolk Mind

A New Chair of Trustees has been appointed at Suffolk Mind, to oversee the governance of the board.

Ian White takes over from Nigel Suckling after joining Suffolk Mind in April 2016 as a member of the Board and the Finance Committee. Ian is a Chartered Accountant and the Managing Director of Becketts, a wealth management company based in Bury St Edmunds. 

Ian said: “I’m delighted to be associated with such an innovative organisation that passionately believes in improving everyone’s mental health. Suffolk Mind faces a unique set of challenges; to raise sufficient money to deliver world class services within Suffolk, but maintain within tight financial budgets.

“I am hoping that my business background will assist in getting more companies involved in both fundraising but also ensuring that their own employees are aware of what they need to do to maintain their own mental health.”

Suffolk Mind has a formal constitution and is governed by an unpaid Board of Trustees with day to day management delegated to the chief executive. The trustees are responsible for the governance of the organisation, the delivery of safe and high quality services, and keeping financial accounts and safeguarding the assets of the charity.

Jon Neal, Chief Executive of Suffolk Mind said: “Ian has been a valuable member of our trustee board over the last few years, providing astute business and strategic advice. I look forward to working with him as we continue to grow and work with more employers and statutory partners in making Suffolk the best place in the world for talking about and taking care of mental health.”

Author: Kristina Brinkley
Posted on: 14th November 2018


Great Grandson of Ipswich World War One soldier to unveil 2,018 poppies during Armistice Day commemorations

The Great Grandson of a World War One soldier from Ipswich is unveiling 2,018 hand-crafted poppies at the place where his family name appears on the War Memorial, to commemorate the Centenary of Armistice Day.

Sam Clifford, the Great Grandson of Private Louis Clifford, and Suffolk Mind staff member, will be attending a ‘Healing Memories’ event at Quay Place in Ipswich from 10am on Monday 5th November.

The event is to support forces personnel, ex-forces, their families and friends by providing information about the services and help available to them. It’s part of a week of activities to commemorate the soldiers named on the memorial at Quay Place which hasn’t seen a remembrance service since St Mary at the Quay (the name of the renovated church) was closed 75 years ago.

Suffolk Mind will host a workshop to explore the symptoms of trauma, including post-traumatic stress disorder, and other organisations like The Samaritans, The Royal British Legion and PTSD Resolution will be in attendance.

Sam said: “Having worked at Suffolk Mind for four years, it was so nice to discover that I had such a connection to the beautiful Quay Place and the overall history of Ipswich.

“I’m so excited to learn more about my Great Granddad’s life and I’m proud to be part of this event to honour him and many others whose lives have been affected by war.”

Louis Clifford is one of 22 soldiers named on the War Memorial located at the back of Quay Place. Each of the soldiers has been researched by volunteers over the past 18 months. Their stories will be on display at Quay Place throughout November.

A number of other events are being held at Quay Place in the lead up to 11th November 2018, 100 years since Armistice Day:

  • A Service of Dedication for the War Memorial, Monday 5th November, 7pm. An evening service to remember the 22 local soldiers on the St Mary at the Quay War Memorial for the first time in 75 years. The Service of Dedication will be led by the Bishop of Dunwich, with music by the Felixstowe Salvation Army Band. 
  • Poetry and Music Recital with Remembrance in Mind, Thursday 8th November, 7pm. A poetry and music recital with Remembrance in Mind including music from the talented musicians from The Royal Hospital School and poetry readings from poets of the Suffolk and Essex Poetry Societies.

Both of these events are free to attend.

Rebecca Herod, Deputy Manager of Quay Place said: “We’re really excited to hold these events, as it’s been 75 years since our local soldiers were commemorated at St Mary at the Quay. The 22 soldiers have stories which they are unable to tell and we have created memories to honour them”.

Author: Kristina Brinkley
Posted on: 30th October 2018


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