As the nominated East of England Regional Network Hub for the Mind charity, we at the Herts Sports Partnership have organised our first ever conference dedicated to Mental Health. This online event is an opportunity to hear from some inspiring speakers working in the mental health arena. Attendees can sign up for as many one hour webinars as they choose, with breaks programmed throughout the day.

All sessions are free to attend.

On 14 September Project Officer Alicja Polak spoke with Radio Verulam to explain more about the conference.

Listen here

9.30am, Hannah Beecham, RED January

Over the last five years RED January has empowered 150,000 people to embrace physical activity to improve their mental health and raised over £2.7m for mental health charities. In January 2020 RED inspired more people to be active every day in January, than finished the London Marathon in 2019.

Join Hannah to hear the journey of RED January come to life as she shares the ways that you and your organisations can use RED January as a campaign to:

  • Support your service users/members through their participation on the initiative
  • Use the initiative as a more direct activation campaign within your network
  • Create an employee wellness drive

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11am, Richard Lucas, GoVox

GoVox is the online mental health and wellbeing platform that enables you to “prioritise the conversations that matter” through regular ‘Check Ins’ with those in your teams. Whether that’s members of your local sports club, competition level athletes or students at your school; GoVox is designed to support you and your people, at the times they need you most.

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1pm, Matt Hughes-Short, Evaluation Specialist

Evaluation and mental health often relate to the sensitivity of data collection when dealing with clients.

After this session you’ll be able to:

  • Recognise suitable qualitative evaluation methods for use in mental health settings;
  • Describe the relevance of collecting qualitative data when evaluating a mental health project;
  • Apply this knowledge into your project management practice in a client-centred way;
  • Develop your own qualitative evaluation protocol draft for use within a mental health project.

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2.30pm, Hope Virgo, Raising Awareness and Challenging the Stigma

Hope Virgo is a leading international and award winning advocate for people with eating disorders.

‘For four years, Hope managed to keep it hidden, keeping dark secrets from friends and family. But then, on 17th November 2007, Hope’s world changed forever. She was admitted to a mental health hospital. Her skin was yellowing, her heart was failing. She was barely recognisable. Forced to leave her family and friends, the hospital became her home. Over the next year, at her lowest ebb, Hope faced the biggest challenge of her life. She had to find the courage to beat her anorexia.’

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4pm, Liam Dwyer and Carys Norman, ‘Just Talk’

At the moment 70% of boys and 72% of girls in Hertfordshire think it’s ok to talk about their mental health. We need to make it 100%.

In 2017, a group of professionals from various agencies in Hertfordshire came together to discuss the issue that current mental health services, projects and campaigns were better meeting the needs of girls than boys.

As a result of this meeting, extensive research and consultation took place with teenage boys across Hertfordshire.

The Just Talk campaign was born.

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