World Mental Health Day: Why it matters

family (cropped)
10-10-2017

Picture a bustling office or a busy commuter train, and imagine it full of people.

Now imagine 1 in every 6 of those people standing to one side.

Would it surprise you to know that that’s the number of people in England who report experiencing a common mental health problem in any given week?

The theme of this year’s World Mental Health Day, on October 10th, is mental health in the workplace. It’s no wonder that mental health is a big issue for employers: the World Health Organisation says that depression is now the leading cause of ill health and disability worldwide, which is an astonishing statistic in anyone’s book.

And a recent survey carried out by Randstad on mental health in the construction industry revealed more than a third of workers had experienced a mental health issue in the last year and as many as a quarter were considering leaving the industry, citing high levels of stress and challenges of maintaining a healthy work life balance.

At LionHeart, we began offering free counselling a few years ago. Demand has grown ever since, until last year the service was accessed by almost a quarter of the people we supported.

We have also seen a rise in the number of people citing mental ill health, stress or anxiety as their main reason for requesting support. In the financial year 2016 to 2017, this was 12.5% of the people we helped - double the number of people than the previous year.

LionHeart counsellor Bernadette Antoniou said: “On the face of it, it looks like a huge jump, but what it probably means is that people are simply getting better at acknowledging they might need help and asking for it. We are in a very fortunate position to be able to offer fast access to counselling, without a waiting list. We hear time and again from our clients that they wish they’d picked up the phone sooner because it has really helped them to move forward: people really under-estimate the power of talking.”

We’re also making a difference through the work of our John O’Halloran Initiative. The project takes its name from a retired company MD, father and grandfather who tragically took his own life in 2015, much to the shock of his former colleagues and friends who had no idea he had waged a long, secret battle with severe depression.

In May we ran three annual John O’Halloran symposium events in May to raise awareness of the importance of positive mental health and wellbeing in the property industry. We’re also delivering a range of mental health and wellbeing workshops for RICS professionals around the UK, and supporting firms to sign up to the national Time to Change pledge, to demonstrate a commitment to ending the stigma attached to mental health issues.

We’re also growing our mental health ambassadors programme, with property professionals who have first-hand experience of mental ill health signing up to help us raise awareness and start workplace conversations.

Find out more:

Latest Posts

2017
October
2nd - Work Life Week
9th - LionHeart launches new will-writing webinar
10th - World Mental Health Day
16th - LionHeart lottery launched online
September
7th - World Suicide Prevention Day
11th - Pension Awareness Week
August
9th - Men twice as likely to suffer work-related mental health problems
14th - Tributes to 'Grandfather' of LionHeart
31st - LionHeart takes part in Wellness 17
July
25th - Farewell to two long-serving LionHeart trustees
June
8th - LionHeart helping more people than ever before
28th - LionHeart's 10 steps to wellbeing with Knight Frank
May
11th - Huge turnout for London John O'Halloran Symposium
18th - Mental health campaigner Jonny Benjamin to speak at Bristol Symposium
24th - "I hope something positive will come from dad's suicide"
April
6th - LionHeart signs up to Time to Change Pledge
20th - Row For James team confirmed to speak at John O'Halloran Symposium
20th - No time limit on grief
March
8th - Top tips this No Smoking Day
23rd - 'Switch On' to LionHeart's new webinars
February
1st - LionHeart counselling now requested by 1 in 5 people we support
2nd - "Never under-estimate the power of talking"
2nd - LionHeart working with Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland
16th - New trustees take up positions on LionHeart's Board
January
3rd - 5 reasons to NOT make a New Year's resolution
10th - National Obesity Awareness Week
12th - Tributes to long-serving LionHeart trustee Billy Jenkins
23rd - Expanded work-related support for RICS professionals
2016
December
13th - Huge rise in the number of people supported by LionHeart
November
2nd - Can you design LionHeart's Christmas card?
3rd - LionHeart unveils new look and expanded services
15th - LionHeart launches festive fundraising campaign
22nd - Emergency help for flood victims
October
3rd - Could you be one of our next trustees?
19th - New wellbeing workshops for APC candidates
September
15th - Surveyor's suicide prompts industry mental health project
June
6th - Carers’ life chances being damaged by lack of support and awareness
8th - A carer's story
14th - Help shape the future of support by taking our survey
16th - Men and stress
May
4th - 'Why wait for help?'
26th - Mental health event remembers company MD who took his life
April
12th - CV mistakes and how to avoid them
20th - Sharing the burden of a serious illness
21st - Mental health symposium will remember company MD who took his life
25th - CBRE’s RICS members donate £16,680 to LionHeart
March
8th - Change your habits this No Smoking Day
14th - LionHeart working with LGBT networking and support group Freehold
February
4th - It's Time to Talk
25th - Tributes to former chairman of LionHeart trustees Frederick Jones
January
4th - Financial know-how for young professionals
4th - Planning for retirement with LionHeart
5th - Flooding victims receive help from LionHeart
6th - New Year divorce spike predicted
7th - Should you go Dry for January?
20th - How small steps add up to big health changes
25th - Countdown to 10th annual Crypt Factor
2015
December
7th - Emergency grants available following Storm Desmond floods
8th - Dealing with loneliness at Christmas
15th - Hosting a Christmas gathering? 10 ways to keep your cool
23rd - Financial help for flooding victims still available
23rd - Merry Christmas from all at LionHeart
November
4th - LionHeart’s top 10 stress-busting tips
4th - Why I am leaving a legacy to LionHeart
12th - What is counselling and how does it work?
16th - RICS president’s London to Paris bike ride to benefit LionHeart
17th - Am I an addict? 14 Questions to ask yourself
19th - Do you know how much you are drinking?
20th - What are your rights as a carer?
26th - Living with a serious illness
26th - RICS London to Paris bike ride completed
October
21st - Survey reveals key issues RICS members face
28th - Disconnected? Spotting and dealing with work-related stress
September
30th - Worcester branch donates in memory of Paul Weaver and Jonathan Chilton
May
11th - The Helpfulness of Mindfulness
April
27th - LionHeart Announces All Round Increases in Service Use and Donations
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