Tackling stigma of mental health

The Ayrshire Anti-Stigma Group and the Panel of Reference Group are joining forces with students from Ayr College, including some from Carrick, to help tackle the stigma and discrimination which surrounds mental ill health.

As part of this year’s Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival (www.mhfestival.com) the students will be writing, directing and performing a play titled ‘Inside Out’ which will highlight real life stories and this will be shown at a range of venues throughout Ayrshire during October.

Just over one in four people will experience a mental health problem at some point in their lives and this includes illnesses such as anxiety disorders, depression, eating disorders, dementia, bipolar affective disorder and schizophrenia. Recovery from mental health problems can be helped considerably by support from health professionals, family members and friends.

The group are looking for individuals who have experienced stigma and discrimination in relation to mental health-related issues.

Individuals and family members or carers can come along to a drop-in session at Ayr College on Friday, September 2 where they can share their stories sympathetically and anonymously with students. These stories will be used as the basis of the drama.

The students want to make the play as realistic as possible and need your stories and experiences.

The drop-in session is taking place on Friday, September 2 from 9.30am to 12.30pm in the Drama Studio (Room L410), on the top floor of the Riverside Building, Ayr College.