The Mind Media Awards 2014

Wow! What an inspirational night!

I have shared my experiences of mental ill health in the media, particularly focusing on my experiences of spending a night in a cell after being detained under Section 136 of The Mental Health Act. As a media volunteer for mind I was invited to the Mind Media Awards in London last night.

It was such an amazing, inspiring night and I am still buzzing, I truly believe that it is possible to make changes in attitudes towards mental health as well as treatment of mental illness. A highlight was seeing Michael Buchanan and Andy McNicoll win their much deserved award, particularly as I worked with Michael Buchanan on the S136 piece which, again, highlighted the bed crisis.

Last night showed how as a society we have come on leaps and bounds. It was the norm to be silent about these illnesses not so long ago but as more people are speaking out we are stamping out the stigma that exists. Imagine a world where no one has to be ashamed or hide away whilst their illness destroys them. Imagine a world where we treat each other with compassion instead of judgement. It’s possible.

TV programmes such as ‘My Mad Fat Diary’ and ‘The Dumping Ground’ are highlighting mental health problems in a more truthful light than ever before. The character suffering from a mental illness is not put into the script for comedy purposes. More importantly, programmes such as ‘Rugby League: State of Mind’ which target an audience that is often hard to reach and starts life saving conversations.

There were so many inspirational individuals and stories last night, 15 year old Ellen won an award for her amazing OCD blog and Deana Collins, Karen Bonsall, Mary Brailsford and Richard Ward won the Speaking Out award for their brave, persistent and life changing work.

Last night made me even more determined to continue speaking out and reaching out because change is possible. You might think that one voice won’t make a difference but it really, really can. I will not be silenced by my illness.

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3 thoughts on “The Mind Media Awards 2014

  1. So much yes! I have so much respect for you right now, basically I have decided that I will not be ashamed of my life and I want to be part of change, because if it weren’t for stigma I would have been treated a long time ago. My mum told me I could never admit to my mental health problems which have been very bad since childhood, because I would never have a job/boyfriend/degree….. Not acceptable. So yeah, I admire you so much for what you are doing and I wonder if you have any advice on how to be a part of mental health activism? I hope you’re experience has been better than mine so far and you have been well cared for, I feel passionately that there needs to be a serious cash injection to the services and I want to be a part of a voice that’s calling for that. Love to you, you’re awesome and brave ❤️

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      1. Thank you so much for your encouragement, it’s magical. Love to you too, your blog is amazing and literally brought me to tears last night, maybe one day we will cross paths in the real world xxx

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