South London Listens - giving everyone a voice
South London Listens
In November 2020 the first phase of a new mental health prevention initiative launched across south London to help tackle the mental health impacts of Covid-19. NHS Mental Health Trusts and commissioners together with local authorities, Healthwatch, Public Health England, Citizens UK, Black Thrive and other community partners came together to launch a new listening campaign, ‘South London Listens’.
As part of this, Citizens UK invited South Londoners to take part in and hold thier own listening campaigns in their neighbourhood, school, faith or community group. People across the region have shared feedback on how Covid-19 has affected their mental health and wellbeing to help identify key issues across South London.
The campaign is part of a broader programme of work happening over the coming months to engage communities in Bexley, Bromley, Croydon, Greenwich, Lambeth, Lewisham and Southwark, Kingston, Merton, Richmond, Sutton and Wandsworth.
Ultimately, this will see programme partners, people and community groups come together to co-produce solutions that will be published as part of a two-year action plan in Summer 2021.
Last chance to share your feedback
This March, a new community survey has been launched as part of a digital listneing phase to provide a final opportunity for people to share their experiences of how Covid-19 has affected their health and wellbeing.
4,700 people from across South London have already taken part in listening events and shared their experiences and ideas for how we can solve the biggest challenges facing our communities.
Join them by taking the survey now and help us reach as many people as possible by sharing it with your family and friends.Your feedback will help inform future phases of the campaign and the development of the long-term action plan.
Download our partner toolkit and help spread the word
Building a mentally healthier future
As the first step in this journey, South London Listen aims to give everyone in South London a voice as solutions are developed to help promote and protect mental health and prevent people falling into a mental health crisis.
The initiative follows the establishment of the ‘South London Covid-19 Preventing Mental-ill Health Taskforce’, a group made up of representatives from across the programme’s partner organisations. Its purpose is to take forward a long-term prevention programme focused on protecting and promoting mental health in the community.
In 2020, the South London Mental Health and Community Partnership laid the foundations for the programme by hosting a number of digital summits to bring people together. The Taskforce built on early insights gained to develop a set of ambition statements in six key areas:
Social isolation, loneliness and community involvement
Helping people who are at risk of losing their jobs cope
Housing insecurity and environment
Supporting communities and groups who experience disadvantage
Supporting families, children and young people
Developing a long-term, joined-up approach to prevention
Alongside this, the Taskforce has started work to shape possible solutions to the impacts of Covid-19 on our communities’ mental health. Ideas include tackling the digital divide, improving mental health awareness and signposting, co-producing information on mental health promotion and prevention, identifying the barriers to support and growing community networks. These solutions will be developed further as the programme progresses over the coming months.