Marium Zulfiqar, 22, who has bipolar disorder, said when she was at a low point, having a friend reach out beyond social media contact made a world of difference. Only one in four respondents (27 percent) said they had seen any positive change in employees speaking openly about mental health in their organisations. "Social media can be an unbelievable, connective place but a "like", or even hundreds of "likes", can't replace conversation". "The majority of people come to these conversations wanting to make things better, but are paralysed by the fear of making things worse", he says. "To have a shoulder to cry on is one of the best gifts I've received from my friends".
She told Heart likes, follows and shares can stop us having ACTUAL conversations: "I think when it comes to mental health conversations, rather than having those surface level conversation that you have with people on social media it's about having meaningful conversation with people".
McVitie's has joined forces with charity initiative Time to Change to promote conversations around mental health on Time to Talk Day (7 February 2019). "However, doing so connected me with an unbelievable community of people I'd never met who became great friends and a great support".
At the game, CMHA helped raise funds for the Youth Dreams Bursary which goes towards youth in the community who are struggling or have struggled with mental health issues, but also show leadership skills and overcoming it with awards such as dance classes and other activities they are interested in.
Jo Loughran, director of Time to Change added: "We are delighted McVitie's is contributing to our Time to Talk Chatter Box initiative, helping us provide the right tools for people to open up to mental health problems, talk and to listen". Celebrity supporters include Frankie Bridge, Dame Kelly Holmes, Dr Ranj Singh and Matt Johnson. Have a look at the video below, from Counselling Directory member Philip Karahassan, who gives his advice on how to talk to a loved one about your mental health.
"It is surprising, not to mention a real shame, that such a large number of employees still feel there isn't enough mental health support available in the workplace, especially surprising as the topic has significantly increased in awareness in recent years".