A Kent based mental health support and awareness organisation is celebrating their exponential growth and success since their inception less than 12 months ago, attracting global support from celebrities and high profile individuals.
'Minds Like Ours', a non-profit organisation set up in the wake of a BBC mental health broadcasting series, began life as the brain-child of founding member Rebecca Walton, following the unexpected support she received after her personal involvement in the BBC series. The positive public responses highlighted a potential new platform from which mental health awareness could be improved, resulting in the birth of 'Minds Like Ours'.
Rebecca Walton, founder member stated "The most important thing at Minds Like Ours, is that we create an environment which is free from stigma. Where members can come and socialise online and at our events, with people who understand what each other lives with on a daily basis. As well as offering some support and comfort that you are not alone out there.
In addition to the inspirational ethos of the organisation, 'Minds Like Ours' has a uniquely refreshing structure, which has drawn in support from celebrities such as Derren Brown, Alastair Campbell, Rae Earl and Billie Myers alongside other mental health proponents such as 'Mind' and 'Time to Change'.
'Mind Like Ours' is run exclusively by its members, all of whom live (or have lived) with mental health difficulties. This innovative approach offers a unique insight and drives the campaign to increase mental health awareness and reduce associated stigmas. The organisation is run by those with mental health disorders in support of others living with the same difficulties.
Miss Walton continued "Our unique factor is that we are run by our members, which means all of us live with, have lived with, or live with someone who experiences mental ill health. All of our decisions are collectively made throughout our membership, so you always have a say in what we get up to and how we get up to it."
The work and campaigning by 'Minds Like Ours' isn't restricted to any specific area of mental health and the organisation is always looking for ways to support those in need. This was illustrated over the Christmas period when the family of an 8 year old autistic boy were devastated by an arson attack, which destroyed a brand new sensory room his parents had created for him. 'Minds Like Ours' raised almost £2000 in only 24 hours to help rebuild the families sensory room and restore the fire damage.
Looking forward to 2014, 'Mind Like Ours' has its sights set on becoming formally recognised with charity status and is currently working to raise the £5000 needed to make this a reality, in order to further the inspirational work of supporting those with mental health disorders to live normal and productive lives.
'Minds Like Ours' is a mental health awareness organisation run by those living with mental health disorders, in support of others struggling with mental health related illnesses. Despite 1 in 4 living with mental health disorders in the UK, it is still very common for people to be afraid to seek help for fear of discrimination and stigma. To find out more please visit the official website at www.mindslikeours.co.uk