Marking Mental Health Awareness Week 2017 (8-14 May), the Southern Co-operative has chosen Solent Mind, a mental health charity, as its new community partner. With over 190 stores across the South of England, the society has launched a campaign designed to make a difference in the community in which it trades.
Themed “Love your neighbourhood”, the campaign addresses four key aspects: Greener, Safer, Healthier and More Inclusive Neighbourhoods, with a community partner for each one of these. Solent Mind is the fourth community partner and will receive an initial donation of £40,000 from the co-op, raised through the carrier bag levy.
Solent Mind provides support for people experiencing mental health difficulties and is led by a team who have experienced mental health problems themselves. Using their personal experience of mental health, ill health and recovery, they are supporting others facing similar issues.
Sue Forber, head of peer support at Solent Mind, said: “We are delighted to have been chosen as a community partner for Southern Co-op. Their generous initial donation will enable us to develop our ground-breaking new peer support groups in local communities throughout Hampshire. These groups are run by trained volunteers who have experienced mental health issues and offer hope and mutual support away from a medical setting, by sharing interests, hobbies and social activities. We can’t wait to work with our Southern Co-op.”
The co-op is also looking to support and promote the mental and physical health and wellbeing of customers and colleagues alike.