A NEW mental health partnership is being launched today (Thursday).
Brighter Berkshire has joined forces with Berkshire Community Foundation.
Brighter Berkshire is a community-led initiative, launched in January, working towards making a strong, positive and lasting impact on the opportunities and support for the people of Berkshire who may have a range of mental health needs.
This includes new mothers suffering from post-natal depression, children needing increasing support around resilience and emotional development in schools, men over the age of 25, where suicide is the biggest cause of death, and those in later life suffering from mental health issues linked to loneliness, bereavement and dementia.
Brighter Berkshire evolved through conversations about the growing issues linked with mental health in Berkshire.
The organisation states it “builds on the desire by many to do something proactive and which would allow absolutely anyone to get involved”.
The Berkshire Community Foundation, meanwhile, raises funds for, and makes grants to, local charities and community groups addressing identified need across the county.
Some of this work, according to organisers, is beginning to cluster into themes where people from across the county are working together.
This has led to the creation of Brighter Berkshire Buddy Groups to support people.
Newbury MP Richard Benyon praised Brighter Berkshire in the House of Commons, winning a ringing endorsement of the initiative from Prime Minister Theresa May.
As well as formally launching the new partnership, this evening’s event will also be used to talk about the project’s work, hand out postcards and posters for circulation and to give an update on progress.
A spokeswoman for Brighter Berkshire, Alison Foster, said: “This evening we hope to raise awareness and bring people together.
“There will be a diverse range of people, from those who have experienced mental health issues to politicians and schools.”
Brighter Berkshire was launched in Newbury and on Saturday, March 25, there will be a ‘walk and talk for mental health’ in the town.
Participants will meet in town at 1pm wearing Brighter Berkshire T-shirts before engaging with as many people as possible.
The partnership launch this evening takes place from 4pm to 7pm at the Brighter Berkshire headquarters in the Stratus Room at 100 Longwater Avenue, Green Park, Reading.
For more information visit www.brighterberkshire.com