For more information

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Call the team: 0208 5555778.

Call the team: 0208 5555778.

Faith and Wellbeing Mental Health Project

Hackney Giving

AHPN will reduce stigma and improve public attitudes towards mental health in Hackney and its environs by working simultaneously with Faith leaders from Black led Churches and members of the African and Caribbean communities who are living with mental health problems. We will stage presentations/testimonies to congregations in African and Caribbean faith settings and following services or fellowship group intervention, congregations will be engaged in social contact. Faith in Wellbeing Project (FWP) leads will be recruited and trained in communication and drama, to take their personal stories into Black led churches, faith and fellowship groups in and around the Borough.

Their presentations will challenge perceptions and raise issues of stigma and discrimination. Following services, the project leaders and volunteers will engage congregants in meaningful 1 to 1 discussions about the stories presented and issues raised. Through four interventions per month over a four month period (6 month project period) the project will target 16 Churches or faith groups leading to at least 400 individual social contacts and concrete opportunities to address stigma and discrimination in relation to mental health to much greater numbers in audiences and congregations.

What we will do

•Three Project champions with a lived experience of mental health as individuals or carers will be recruited and trained in communication and dramatic skills, along with a bank of AHPN volunteers.

•In teams they will in take their personal stories about mental health to Black led churches in the Borough.

•The FWP Champions will engage congregations with presentations, testimonies, role-plays, poems or monologues. By presenting these pieces they will challenge perceptions about mental health.

•Following performances and church services the project champions and groups of project volunteers will engage members of the congregation in meaningful 1 to 1 discussions about pieces seen and issues raised with FWP Champions and volunteers

How it works

AHPN has a history of working with and across faith communities. Our work on our ‘Changing Perspectives’ project is concerned with raising awareness and changing perceptions of stigmatised long-term health conditions among African communities. We achieve this by working with faith communities and we have also developed resources for faith leaders (both Muslim and Christian) to support them in raising health issues, challenging stigma and changing perspectives. Drawing on this experience we will engage African and Caribbean faith communities by:

•Utilising our established faith contacts to gain access to denominational faith leaders and faith settings

•Ensuring that Project champions are partnered with established ‘Health Ambassadors’ at the local level (where these exist in Hackney congregations)

•Ensuring that our Project champions and volunteers are trained and adequately prepared to engage congregations

This project will aim to:

•Improve public attitudes & behavior towards mental health issues which will lead to people facing less discrimination in relation to their mental health

•Improve the confidence and ability of with mental health problems to take action to tackle stigma and discrimination

•Improve the confidence of people with mental health problems to engage in and contribute to the life of their community

Your involvement

There will be 16 interventions in African or Black led churches/ fellowship groups/Alpha courses/ organised workshops/Bible study groups in Hackney. Numbers attending will always vary but we estimate that at least 25 meaningful, face to face discussions will take place following each presentation addressing mental health stigma and discrimination.

Do you want to learn more about this project or can you get involved? AHPN would like to hear from you.

Please contact or give the team a call on 0208 5555778.