Nurturing good mental health in Sandwell: further resources18th January 2023
One of the key roles of Sandwell Business Ambassadors is promoting good mental health. This is important to help each of us thrive and make the most out of life. Supporting wellbeing at work helps reduce sickness absence, increase productivity and lower staff turnover.
There are lots of initiatives in Sandwell that offer support in a range of areas. Whether you’re struggling with your own mental health, supporting friends, or implementing a strategy at work, help is available. So we have rounded up some resources here.
Maintaining mental health and wellbeing
Our page lists over 50 small things we can all do to boost our mood and maintain good mental health. This includes breathing exercises, connecting with nature and taking regular screen breaks.
One thing we all need is social connection. Evidence shows that isolation and loneliness are closely connected with depression, anxiety and increased risk of heart disease or stroke. Sandwell’s Warm Spaces initiative provides a safe place over winter for people to keep warm, connect with others over a hot drink, charge their phones and get support. Visit the Warm Spaces webpage to find out more.
Getting help when you need it
In December, Sandwell Council’s public health team launched an interactive text messaging service to signpost residents to health and wellbeing support. To start a conversation, just text HELLO and your town name (Oldbury, Rowley Regis, Smethwick, Tipton, Wednesbury or West Bromwich) to 07700 154 122. An artificial intelligence system will then signpost you to sources of help.
Or if you’d prefer to talk to a person, the Black Country Mental Health Helpline is available for Black Country residents of all ages 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Call freephone 0800 008 6516 or text message 07860 025 281.
Support for people at crisis point
Sandwell Suicide Prevention Partnership recently launched a suicide prevention strategy and action plan. Its aim is to reach zero suicides in Sandwell by 2030.
Councillor Suzanne Hartwell, Sandwell Council’s cabinet member for adults, social care and health, said: “We recognise that the causes of suicide are varied and complex, and that every story is different. So one of our main objectives is to make sure that anyone across the system who comes into contact with someone who is struggling or thinking about ending their life has the skills and knowledge to be able to have a supportive conversation with that person and guide them to appropriate support.”
You can find out more about the strategy on the Healthy Sandwell website.
There are also organisations that support people dealing with specific issues, such as bereavement, domestic abuse and substance abuse. The contact details are listed below. Whether you want to maintain good mental health, support others, promote better awareness or reach out in a crisis, there is help available in Sandwell.
For confidential suicide prevention advice for young people, contact HOPELINEUK on freephone 0800 068 4141 (9am – midnight all year round) or text message 07860 039 967.
Call for free 24/7 on 116 123.
Kaleidoscope Sanctuary hub
Freephone 0800 008 6516 (Monday to Friday 6pm – 11pm; Saturday & Sunday 12noon – 11pm).
Cruse Bereavement Care
Freephone 0808 808 1677 (Monday & Friday 9.30am – 5pm, Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday 9.30am – 8pm, Weekends 10am – 2pm)
Tough Enough To Care
Local support groups for men.
Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide (SOBS)
Call 0300 111 5065 (Monday and Tuesday 9am – 5pm)
Thrive at Work
This initiative offers a toolkit of local and national resources, policies and services. These can make it easier for your business to improve employee health and wellbeing.
Black Country Women’s Aid
Supports survivors of domestic abuse and sexual violence. If you need help, call 0121 553 0090. The organisation can also deliver training on the issues surrounding domestic abuse, coercive control, stalking, rape and sexual violence, forced marriage, honour-based violence, FGM, modern slavery and child sexual exploitation.
NHS: Every Mind Matters
This national initiative from the NHS offers articles, tips and even a Your Mind Plan (https://www.nhs.uk/every-mind-matters/mental-wellbeing-tips/your-mind-plan-quiz/) quiz to get top tips tailored for you.
Sandwell Healthy Minds
Offers psychological therapy services for people experiencing common mental health problems such as low mood, depression or anxiety and stress. If you are 16 or over, live in Sandwell or are registered with a Sandwell GP, call 0303 033 9903 (8am – 5pm, Monday to Friday).
Provides free and confidential advice and support to adults in Sandwell who would like to talk about alcohol or drugs. The website also includes drug and alcohol self-assessment tools to help you assess your use. Or you can call 0121 553 1333.