South London Listens - giving everyone a voice
South London Listens
This Winter, the first phase of a new mental health prevention initiative is launching 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 have come together to launch new listening campaign, ‘South London Listens’.
As part of this, Citizens UK is inviting South Londoners to sign up to training sessions on 19 and 26 January to learn how to run listening campaigns in their own neighbourhood, school, faith or community group. This will give communities across the region the opportunity to share feedback on how Covid-19 has affected their mental health. These insights will help inform future phases of the campaign and the development of an action plan which will be published in Spring 2021.
If you can’t make one of Citizens UK’s sessions, you can also find a guide on running your own listening workshop over December or January pdf here. (529 KB)
Help spread the word - download our campaign toolkit
We’re encouraging everyone across South London to get involved in the campaign. So to help spread the world we’ve created a mini campaign toolkit that you can download here.
This includes information and resources that anyone can use to help share news of the campaign on websites, newsletters, blogs and social media.
Building a mentally healthier future
South London Listens is the first phase of a broader programme of work happening over the next eight 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 Spring 2021.
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.
Over the past six months the South London Mental Health and Community Partnership has laid the foundations for the programme, hosting three digital summits to bring people together. The Taskforce built on early insights gained to develop a set of ambition statements in six key areas which were discussed at the latest summit in November:
- 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 next six months.