An important moment of 2021 was COP26.
With all eyes turned to Scotland, this was a key moment to entrench mental health and the fight against health inequality as an integral part of the conversation on climate change.
We know that changes to the environment hugely affect our mental health and that people in the UK are experiencing eco-anxiety. These themes will be explored in more detail in this edition of TalkBack.
Our trip to COP26
As part of the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26), the Mental Health Foundation hosted the COP26 Citizen’s Forum on Climate Change and Mental Health. This was a community participation event which brought together not only health practitioners, policymakers and academics, but also representatives and activists from those communities most at risk from climate change effects.
Policy ask becomes law
Mental Health Awareness Week 2021 recognised the link between nature and mental health. We joined the State of Nature campaign, calling for a legally binding target to end nature’s decline by 2030 to be included in the Environment Bill.
The Campaign amassed 208,000 signatures to its petition and in August 2021 the Government amended the Bill and the amended final Act passed into law in November 2021.
This makes the UK the first country in the world with a legally binding target to halt nature’s decline, something that is essential for the health of our planet, and for our mental health.
We spotlight Picture This, a digital creative programme to help older people access the internet.
We catch up with a Programmes Trainee on our Mind Over Mirror campaign, focussing on promoting positive mental health and raising awareness of underrepresented body image matters.
In November the Mental Health Foundation in Scotland published the findings of the first year of its Thriving Learners study - one of the most significant, and potentially largest, studies of students’ mental health that has ever taken place in the UK.
We work to make a world where there is good mental health for all – but we can’t do it without you supporting our work.