SOS at the MOJ
Every day during mental health awareness week, SOS aims to do something to mark the significance of this period and encourage everyone to join together in support of the vulnerable.
Everyone, wherever they are in the world, deserves to live with positive mental health, yet the truth is far different. Suicide rates are soaring and the lack of adequate resources meant the scale of the problem was easy to anticipate, certainly in the UK.. We should have seen the signs and acted a long time ago.
Rather than invest in positive mental health for all through a solid educational awareness and prevention programme delivered as part of the curriculum, we diverted our attention to focus on cures and this only when we become overwhelmed and under-equipped to deal with the epidemic scale of physcological illnesses that are swamping people throughout the world.
Today, on Day 1 of MHAW, we went to the Ministry of Justice in London to deliver an SOS meeting, which was arranged following our executive level meetings earlier this year.
There was a fabulous mix of people at the meeting and it was inspiring to hear how some employees, on the back of their own mental wellbeing struggles, have taken matters into their own hands to deliver support, advice and friendship to their work colleagues. At a time when more people than ever are having to self help as part of their coping mechanism, the creation and development of support networks, whether at school, work or home, are more crucial than ever.
Like all large Organisations, fragmentation exists and the MOJ is no different. None of the people in the room knew each other and were not aware of the in-house support services already in existence and the introduction of new ones.
So today, on day 1, SOS has again linked people together, encouraged the formation of new networks who can join together to distribute care and support where, and when, it is needed. As a responsible and caring employer, the MOJ is very keen that all staff have the ability to discuss their mental health issues without fear of recrimination.
The MOJ hope that SOS will return to deliver another event that will be planned for a much larger audience. With 4,000 employees in the one building alone, that should not be difficult to achieve!!
We had some fabulous feedback during and after the event, and below is a cut from one such email:
“I felt it was really moving to see people ‘open up’ and start to speak about a topic that we so often do not mention. It certainly opened my eyes to the myriad ways people can be affected by suicide. I hope you also thought that the response was really encouraging in the room and we were pleased to get some positive links for further engagement and connections. It was good to hear there are conversations already starting around MoJ, but as we discussed, it would also be good to organise a larger meeting for another date”
We’d like to thank the MOJ for the opportunity to deliver SOS today and we are thrilled everyone found it so beneficial.
If you’d like to help raise awareness by eradicating silence and stigma and would like SOS to host an event at your company or organisation, then please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with the heading Event Request.