With yesterday (Sunday 6 August) a day for celebrating all things friendship, St Helens Council’s Healthy Living Team is looking to connect people with others to improve their wellbeing, by holding a number of sessions throughout August to support the 5 Ways to Wellbeing initiative.
Held each year on August 6, Friendship Day was proclaimed in 2011 by UN General Assembly to recognise the relevance and importance of friendship as a noble and valuable sentiment in the lives of human beings around the world.
With research by the Mental Health foundation and NHS showing more people regard maintaining a healthy relationship as the most important factor to improving their wellbeing, St Helens Council launched the 5 Ways to Wellbeing campaign at the start of this year which highlights five simple ways of improving and protecting mental health and wellbeing.
The campaign encourages people to ‘connect’ with others by finding the time to talk with friends and family; ‘give’ small acts of kindness through acts such as volunteering; ‘keep learning’ in order to boost confidence; ‘be active’ to make you feel and function better; and ‘take notice’ of the thoughts and feelings and the world around us, which can positively change the way someone feels about life.
As a way of reaching out to the public and to raise awareness of the initiative, members of the Healthy Living Team will be based in Taylor Park and Church Square in the town centre on various dates throughout August where they will give advice and support on mental health and provide more information on the 5 Ways to Wellbeing initiative.
Commenting on the 5 Ways to Wellbeing campaign, St Helens Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, Councillor Gill Neal, said: “Talking about how we feel is the first step to improving our mental wellbeing and helps reduce the stigma and isolation that many people feel.
“Following these five simple steps can dramatically decrease stress and anxiety levels and help people develop a real sense of purpose from the opportunities available to them.”
Want more information? Pop along and speak to the team in person at the following locations and times:
Tuesday 8 August: 10am to 3pm, Church Square
Wednesday 9, 16, 23 August: 1pm to 3pm – Taylor Park Rangers’ Hut
Plenty of mental health and wellbeing support is available across St Helens. For more information, visit: www.timetotalksthelens.co.uk