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European Mental Health Week

10-16 May 2021

#MentalHealthMatters ♥ #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek

Mental Health Europe is hosting the second edition of the European Mental Health Week on 10 – 16 May 2021. This year’s theme ‘Mental Health Matters’ will shine a spotlight on mental health as a high-profile societal issue as well as a deeply personal experience for everyone during the pandemic.

Mental health matters, now more than ever

 

My mental health matters. Your mental health matters. Our mental health matters. More than ever.

 

Everyone is involved. Every day is impacted. Every society is stronger. When mental health matters.

 

We are all experiencing a different pandemic. Suffering the loss of a loved one, missing family or friends, losing workplace security, makes us feel lonely, stressed or uncertain.

 

The good news is that our mental health can always improve.

 

We are all on a different path, at different stages on our mental health journey. Let’s now answer the questions that really matter.

 

Move your mind. Move your body. Move forward.

 

Mental health matters. More than ever.

About the week

 

All you wanted to know

 

European Mental Health Week is a pan-European initiative that aims to raise awareness about the importance of mental health in our everyday lives. Set up and run by Europe’s largest independent mental health NGO Mental Health Europe (MHE), the second edition of the European Mental Health Awareness Week will take place from 10 May until 16 May 2021.

 

This year’s theme ‘Mental Health Matters’ will shed a spotlight on mental health as a high-profile societal issue as well as a deeply personal experience for everyone during the pandemic and beyond. Over a year of pandemic, lockdowns and coronavirus restrictions have put a strain on many people’s mental health. We are all experiencing a different pandemic. Some experience the loss of a loved one, miss friends or family; others lost their workplace security and feel lonely, stressed and uncertain about the future. Now, more than ever, our mental health matters.

 

This week-long online action is a chance for people to talk about all aspects of mental health, share personal stories of how people cope with difficulties during the coronavirus crisis and highlight the need for action focusing on advice and support.

Watch an opening message from Liuska Sanna, Acting Director of Mental Health Europe to mark the start of 2021 European Mental Health Week.

Why the week

 

Background

 

The European Mental Health Awareness Week builds on the long-standing global tradition of celebrating Mental Health Awareness month in May. In the US, Mental Health Month was initiated by Mental Health America in 1949. Every year since it has been celebrated with growing support from the public and policymakers, now for 70 years. In Canada, the Canadian Mental Health Association has hosted Mental Health Week during the first week of May for nearly 70 years. Mental Health Awareness Week has been run by Mental Health Foundation on the third week of May for the last 20 years in the UK.

 

Our ambition is to promote this positive practice throughout Europe and establish the European Mental Health Week as an annual pan-European mental health campaign celebrating the path to awareness and action.

The week in numbers

Closer look

7

days

14

events

22

countries across Europe

26

partners

How to get involved

Take part

This year the European Mental Health Week is an online action. The week is open to everyone: we all have mental health, so the more people involved the better! Here are a few ideas for how you can get involved:

5 ways you can participate in the European Mental Health Week

1.

 

Get social –

spread the word  

2.

 

Use your

voice –

act for

mental health

3.

 

Get involved – attend or host online event 

4.

 

Share your story, a tip or encouraging words

5.

 

Give

something back –

fundraise for MHE

Get social – spread the word

There are many ways to bring awareness about mental health. One way is through engagement on social media.

 

Help us spread the word about the week by sharing messages and visuals. Mark the week using the hashtags #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek and #MentalHealthMatters. Spread the word to your followers on social media. The more people hear about the campaign the better! It only takes a few seconds but can have a lasting impact.

 

You can also follow Mental Health Europe on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn, share our content and join the conversation online. Like and retweet our posts throughout the week using the hashtags #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek and #MentalHealthMatters. Tag us on social media too so that we can celebrate the week with you.

 

We have created assets and example posts to make it as easy as possible  for you to shout about the week. Feel free to adapt  the content according to your needs or develop your own.

Start the conversation today by sharing the following post:

Join the #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek from 10 – 16 May if you agree that #MentalHealthMatters – now more than ever.

Learn more: www.mhe-sme.org/emhw

Use your voice – act for mental health!

We want to get as many people as possible talking about mental health in Europe this week. The ongoing pandemic and coronavirus restrictions have put a strain on all of our mental health. Now more than ever, our mental health matters.

Use your voice, use one of our shareable, fillable assets and act for mental health!

Tell the world why mental health matters

Show your family, friends and networks that you’re getting behind the European Mental Health Week.

 

We’ve created a shareable, fillable image for Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram and for sharing it on your Stories. Please download it and share your personal commitment with your own message. Tell the world why mental health matters to you.

 

Please tag Mental Health Europe in any posts you make and use the hashtag #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek. We’ll share your submission on our website and social media.

How do I add my message to the banner? There are a couple of ways you can do that.

Printout

  • Please download and print out the image from here: image with white background  |  image with blue background
  • Use a thick black marker or a felted pen to write so your message appears clearly in the photo.
  • Add your message to the banner.
  • When you’re done, use your phone to take a picture of yourself holding the banner.
  • Share the photo on social media, using the hashtag #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek and tagging Mental Health Europe in a post.
  • You can also nominate 3 other followers to do the same using the hashtags #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek and #MentalHealthMatters.

PDF

  • Please download this fillable PDF file: image with white background  |  image with blue background
  • Add your message directly to the file.
  • When you’re done, save PDF as an image (File > Export to > Image > PNG) and share the image on your social media feed using the #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek hashtag.
  • Nominate 3 friends to do the same and use the hashtags #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek and #MentalHealthMatters.

PowerPoint

  • Please download this fillable Microsoft PowerPoint file: image with white background  |  image with blue background
  • Add your message directly to the file.
  • When you’re done, save the file as an image (File > Export > Choose file format as PNG > Click Export).
  • Share the image on your social media feed using the #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek hashtag.
  • Nominate 3 friends to do the same and use the hashtags #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek and #MentalHealthMatters.

Canva

  • If you’re on Canva, please feel free to access the file here: Twitter, Facebook & LinkedIn |  Instagram |   Story
  • Add your message to the banner.
  • Save the image as PNG or JPG and share it on social media using the #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek hashtag.
  • Nominate 3 friends to do the same and use the hashtag #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek and #MentalHealthMatters.

Use a virtual meeting background to raise awareness about mental health

At your next video call with colleagues, show your support for mental health by adding a virtual background with the ‘Mental Health Matters’ message. It can be also a great conversation starter with your teammates. Next time you speak to them, ask them “How are you really doing today?”

 

To add or change your virtual background during a Zoom meeting, click on the upward arrow (^) next to Start/Stop Video. Click Choose Virtual Background, and select any of European Mental Health Week themed backgrounds from here.

 

For detailed advice, see guidance on how to change your background on Zoom, for Teams, in Google Meet, and for Skype video calls.

Top tips for the best Virtual Background results:

  • Use bright, solid lighting.
  • Higher quality cameras yield better results.
  • Don’t wear clothing the same colour as your virtual background.
  • Leave “Mirror my video” checked. Words in your background will look backwards to you, but will read normally to the other meeting participants.

Update your Facebook profile picture with our frame

Show your support for the week by adding a themed frame to your Facebook profile. This is a simple way to share with your friends that you support positive mental health while raising further awareness.

 

How to add a customised look to your Facebook profile?

  • Go to your profile on the Facebook app and tap “Edit” on your profile picture.
  • Then tap “Add Frame”.
  • Search for a European Mental Health Week frame from Mental Health Europe and select one of the three available options.
  • Once your profile has been updated, copy and send this URL to other people so they can use this effect.
  • Share your new profile look in a post with your friends and followers.

Get involved – attend or host an online event!

Show your support by showing up to one of our virtual events – please see the details below.

 

Join the action and inspire others by hosting your own event under the banner of the 2021 European Mental Health Week. You can raise awareness of mental health and wellbeing in so many ways: from free film screenings or record-breaking attempts to flash mobs, tag-on challenges or fun runs.

 

Get inspiration from some of the ideas below and email info@mhe-sme.org with the details for your event so we can publicise it.

Some ideas for your inspiration:

 

  • Get sweating for mental health: go the distance!
  • Wear something green this European Mental Health Week to show your support and help raise awareness of mental health.
  • Hold a virtual quiz night on Zoom or Teams. Choose different themes for each round of questions – mental health could be one!
  • Change your email signature and raise awareness of mental health amongst your colleagues, partners and customers.
  • Include our materials in your newsletter, announcements, or on your website.

 

Be creative, be active, have fun!

Calendar of events

10

May

Mental health and the pandemic: living, caring, acting!

 

10:30 – 17:15 CEST

 

This one-day, virtual event organised by the European Commission, will kick off 2021 European Mental Health Week. The meeting will highlight the mental health impact of COVID-19 along five themes – understanding – living – caring – responding – acting.

 

The event will bring together a wide array of speakers, including representatives from EU countries, the European Commission, European Parliament as well as from patient organisations, non-governmental organisations, health professionals, civil society and international organisations. The conference language will be English.

10

May

A conversation with Mind: Opening up about our mental health – where to begin?

 

17:00 – 17:20 CEST

 

To kick off 2020 European Mental Health Week, join Mental Health Europe for the Instagram Live with Mind Sweden.

 

Small talk is an important part of human interactions, but often small talk turns into cold talk. Cold talk forces us to speak about light-hearted subjects, although our feelings might be heavy inside.

 

During our conversation, we will learn about the power of ‘warm talk’ in the interpersonal communication and how you can help others open up about their feelings.

11

May

A conversation with MEP Maria Walsh: Making mental health everybody’s business

 

14:00 – 14:30 CEST

 

Join Mental Health Europe for a live Instagram chat with MEP Maria Walsh. As a Member of the European Parliament and a co-chair of MHE’s Coalition for Mental Health and Wellbeing, Maria, is an advocate for mental health and is leading the campaign for a designated European Year for Mental Health. In this Instagram live session Mental Health Europe aims to highlight work being done on mental health at EU level and how we can make mental health everybody’s business.

11

May

Unknown Future of Youth Mental Health

 

11:00 CEST

 

Director & Youth Involvement Lead at Euro Youth Mental Health, Nick Morgan, will be joined by two young activists to discuss some of the findings and stories from their ongoing story collection survey ‘Unknown future of youth mental health’. The discussion will be followed by a Q&A session. These stories are vital and need to be shared to ensure support for young peoples future. This interactive and sensitive session will aim to address the issue of young people dying by suicide. It will promote correct language and share top tips on how to approach a young person, or your friends, that you may be worried about.

11

May

Shaping the future of community mental health services based on human rights 

 

15:00-16:30 CEST

 

This webinar will outline the growing knowledge of community-based support based on human rights and explore the potentials to scale up these practices through dedicated policies, notably in the EU context. The event will bring together key actors working on the development of community mental health care services in Europe, people with lived experiences of mental ill-health, practitioners and policymakers in Europe alike.

 

Speakers, among others, include Dunja Mijatović, Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights and Michelle Funk, ‎Head of the Policy, Law and Human Rights Unit from the Department of Mental Health and Substance Use, World Health Organization.

12

May

Talking to young people about suicide

 

10:30 CEST

 

Join Euro Youth Mental Health for a workshop about young people dying by suicide. This interactive workshop will promote correct language and share top tips on how to approach a young person, or your friends, that you may be worried about.

12

May

A conversation with Pro Mente Austria: Mental health first aid

 

11:00 CEST

 

Join Mental Health Europe for a chat with ProMente Austria to lear about first aid for mental health.

12

May

A conversation with Twitter

 

11:30 CEST

 

Join Mental Health Europe for a chat with Twitter to discuss all things mental health. You will learn some tips, discover new ideas and hear suggestions on how to support your mental health and the wellbeing of others during the pandemic.

12

May

European Mental Health Advocacy Platform: Launch Event

 

14:00-15:30 CEST

 

Mental Health Europe would like to use the current momentum created by the COVID-19 pandemic to launch the Mental Health Advocacy Platform advocating for a comprehensive EU Mental Health Strategy.  The event will see the official launch of the Platform and bring together key stakeholders working in the field of mental health at the EU level. The event will provide an insight into the needs of people with lived experience of mental ill-health. Participants will learn how advocating towards an EU Mental Health Strategy can support providing concrete solutions and sustainable change at the European level.

 

For further details about the meeting, please contact Milos Stankovic via milos.stankovic[at]mhe-sme[dot]org

13

May

Coming out in times of pandemic: LGBTQ+ youth, mental health and Covid-19

 

14:30 CEST

 

Coming out can be one of the most stressful times in someone’s life. Not only because of the fear of rejection from the people around you but also from the questioning that comes with it. Behind it lies questions of identity, expression, attraction and general belonging. This can quickly become overwhelming if you are a teenager or young adult already trying to figure yourself out, let alone during a pandemic.

 

Join a panel of youth activists and various charities, as they share their experiences and discuss what can be done across Europe to provide better support to for these young people. The discussion will be followed with a Q & A at the end. The session is open for everyone.

13

May

A conversation with Aoife Casey: Art as a recovery tool for mental ill-health

 

12:00 – 12:20 CEST

 

Join Mental Health Europe for a conversation with Aoife Casey, an Irish artist, who will share her lived experiences of mental-ill health, what helps her during current times and what role her art plays as a recovery tool. With this Instagram live series Mental Health Europe aims to give persons with lived experience the opportunity to normalise speaking about this topic.

14

May

Mental health experiences during the pandemic

 

16:00 – 18:30 CEST

 

Join Mental Health Europe’s Italian member AISMe for an online event about mental health experiences during the pandemic. We have an excellent line-up of speakers including mental healthcare service users, carers, mental health professionals and politicians.

 

The meeting will be held remotely using an online platform. The event language will be Italian.

 

For more details please contact Donatella Miccinesi via aisme.sh[at]gmail.com.

14

May

A conversation with Michael and Calvin: Covid-19, peer support and recovery

 

13:30 – 14:00 CEST

 

Covid-19 has created many changes to how we work, play and live in society. This impact has been particularly damaging for young people’s mental health as for many, the past year has meant staying at home, away from peers and learning through online technology.

 

Mental Health Europe’s member Mental Health Ireland hosted a conversation with Michael and Calvin, two postgraduate research students of Waterford Institute of Technology and Trinity College Dublin respectively. This Instagram Live session focuses on their experiences. They discuss how Covid-19 has impacted their mental health, particularly due to the lack of peer contact. How they coped during this time and what is in store for them now that restrictions are easing – find out in the video.

14

May

A conversation with Jake Mills: end stigma around men’s mental health

 

16:30 – 17:00 CEST

 

TW: suicide

Mental Health Europe was delighted to host a conversation with Jake Mills, founder and CEO of Chasing the Stigma, a non-profit organisation. Jake shared with us his lived experience of mental ill-health and surviving a suicide attempt. He also spoke about men’s mental health in general, a topic that is often still overlooked and associated with stigma. Additionally, we discussed his suicide prevention campaign “There is hope”.

14

May

A conversation with Romanian influencer Emil Rengle: LGBTI mental health

 

18:00 – 18:30 CEST

 

In the LGBTI community, loneliness has more than doubled during the lockdown, rising to 56% experiencing it “very often” or “every day.” Besides, around one-in-six LGBTI reported some form of discrimination since the start of the pandemic because they were LGBTI (16.7%). 

 

Mental Health Europe was delighted to have a conversation with Romanian influencer Emil Rengle who is an artist and outspoken mental health advocate. We spoke about mental health, identity and what can help prevent mental ill-health in the LGBTI community.

15

May

A conversation with Mila Daskalova: Promoting mental health through literature and art

 

12:30 – 13:00 CEST

 

Join Mental Health Europe for a conversation with Mila Daskalova, co-founder and editor of Podslon (‘Shelter’). Podslon is a recently launched magazine in Bulgaria promoting awareness of mental health through literature and art.

16

May

A conversation with Belle de Jong : Ending coercion in mental healthcare

 

16:00 – 16:20 CEST

 

Join Mental Health Europe for a conversation with Belle de Jong, a freelance writer based in Malta. Her article about what she experienced at Mount Carmel Hospital caused a national outcry and shed a renewed spotlight on coercion in mental healthcare.

Share your story, a tip or words of encouragement

Tell us: how are you coping with difficulties during the coronavirus crisis?

 

Think of these questions:

  • What have you been doing to try and look after your mental health at the moment?
  • What have you learned about your mental health in the past year?
  • What strengths have you discovered within yourself?

 

Nominate 3 friends and ask them to share their tips or words of encouragement, use the hashtags #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek and #MentalHealthMatters and don’t forget to tag Mental Health Europe in your post. We want to make your advice heard by others.

Share a tip

Share 3 tips that help your mental wellbeing on a daily basis in these tough times

Share a song

Share a song that elevates you and helps you cope with stressful times

Share a video

Share a short video recording telling us how you are looking after mental health to support others

Share a photo

Share a photo of what inspires you and keeps you going on a daily basis during lockdown

Share a story

Share your own mental health story, ignite and inspire conversation. You can submit your story via this link or an email.

Share your story, ignite and inspire conversation. Don’t forget – #MentalHealthMatters.

Let’s celebrate European Mental Health Week by listening to the feel-good songs to boost your mood

Music has the powers. It can change the way we act, think and feel. Different music affects everybody uniquely. But we all agree that music has the ability to make us dance like nobody’s watching and sing as if no one will hear. 

 

Listening to music is known to have positive effects on mental health. It can elevate your mood, reduce stress, improve focus and help relaxation. What music has the mood-boosting powers on you? Share your favourite feel-good songs with us via the hashtag #EuropeanMentalHealthWeek.

 

Let’s celebrate European Mental Health Week by listening to this Feel-good Playlist.

Stay connected with others

Reaching out and connecting with others is essential for our mental health. Socialising decreases stress and anxiety and makes us feel connected. By talking to someone, we share our emotions and experiences, provide or receive support which can bring a sense of comfort and stability. Talking through your concerns or feelings may also help you find ways of dealing with challenges.

 

Besides, reaching out to someone who may be feeling alone or concerned can benefit both the person receiving support as well as the helper.

 

There are many ways to connect with others digitally regularly. Keep in touch with your family and friends, it will help you ease the stress of your daily life.

 

Next time you text them, send them one of our mental health stickers — they are available on many instant messengers.

Give something back – fundraise

Celebrate European Mental Health Week 2021 with us and help us promote mental health in Europe by organising a fundraiser.

 

There are so many ways to fundraise for Mental Health Europe: from doing a virtual distance challenge to organising a team-building activity with your team and doing something good for mental health.

 

Depending on your time, there are numerous ways to get involved. Here you can see some fun and easy ideas to inspire you for a virtual ‘Mental Health Matters’ fundraiser this European Mental Health Week.

Donate directly (for your birthday, the money you would have spent on commute)

Support our pan-European awareness campaign by donating directly through our website. You’ll be making a big difference helping us to promote mental health, resilience and recovery for all. Get more inspiration from our fundraising toolkit >>

 

Email signature

Change your email signature and raise awareness amongst your colleagues, partners and customers. Learn more from our fundraising toolkit >>

 

Dress to fundraise: wear green to show your support for mental health

Green is the colour of mental health representing hope, strength and support. This European Mental Health Week, wear something green to raise awareness and fundraise for mental health. See more ideas from our fundraising toolkit >>

Fundraising on Facebook or Instagram

 

Using Facebook fundraising tools is an easy way to ask your friends on Facebook to join you in raising funds for Mental Health Europe. If you’re on Instagram, there’s an option where you can add a donate button to your story and select MHE as the organisation you want to donate to.

 

See more ideas in our fundraising toolkit >>

  • Sign up for a virtual distance challenge
  • Host a virtual walking/running event
  • Organise an online auction
  • Host a virtual quiz
  • Run a virtual book club
  • Host a virtual cinema night
  • Throw a virtual party
  • Ask for a matched funding
  • Organise an office sweepstake

 

Get more ideas and inspiration in our fundraising toolkit >>

 

Start raising money for mental health today! The earlier you kickstart your fundraising, the more time you have to raise much-needed funds. Every challenge taken will help us improve mental health for all throughout Europe. Be a changemaker in any way that fits your lifestyle.

 

With your support, we can campaign for better services and provide vital resources and information in multiple European languages. More people with mental health problems will be able to get respect they deserve and know that they are not alone on their mental health journey.

Download Area

 

Download, personalise and share the European Mental Health Week’s materials as far and as wide as you can.

Thank you for getting involved in European Mental Health Awareness Week 2021.

 

If you would like any further information or have any questions please contact Tetiana Sykes, Communications Manager at Mental Health Europe, tetiana[dot]sykes[at]mhe-sme[dot]org.

 

Also please reach out and tell us how you are engaging your communities in raising awareness about mental health. With your support, we can continue to improve mental health in Europe for all.