New figures, released on Time to Talk Day (1 February), reveal two thirds (66%) of people in the UK feel they have no one to talk to when it comes to personal conversations on topics such as mental health, money problems and relationships. When asked why, the top reasons were: never being able to find the right time, or the right place.
Time to Change commissioned the independent survey of over 2,500 UK adults to mark Time to Talk Day, a nation-wide push to get people talking more openly about mental health. The data reveals that many people are missing out on support from those around them, simply because they cannot find the ‘perfect’ time and place to open up. This year marks the fifth Time to Talk Day and the theme is Right Time, Any Place providing everyone with the perfect chance to be more open about mental health – whatever they are doing on the day.
The day was launched at the aptly dubbed ‘Walkie Talkie’ building, one of the tallest, iconic buildings in London where Time to Change champions will start conversations with members of the public, showing that conversations about mental health can happen anywhere. Further conversations will took place in the Sky Garden, where Time to Change champions were be stationed. Stephen Fry, Fearne Cotton, Frankie Bridge, Nicholas Pinnock and Sean Fletcher have also joined thousands of people and organisations to back the campaign by having conversations in the most unlikely locations, from the middle of a cinema to the top of a mountain.
Time to Talk Day was established by Time to Change, the campaign to change how we all think and act about mental health problems, led by the charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness. The day was created in recognition of the fact that people talking and sharing their experiences changes the attitudes of those around them. This year was the first time the event was UK-wide as Time to Change partners with See Me Scotland, Change Your Mind Northern Ireland and Time to Change Wales. The message also went global with support from campaigns as far as the USA and Hong Kong.
Over 2,500 workplaces hosted their own activities including Virgin Trains and Highways England. PG tips will facilitated chats over a cup of tea through its donation of thousands of tea bags made available as part of a ‘chatter box’ full of resources for supporters. In addition 1,300 people in the community– such as lollipop people, mountain rescue groups, gardeners, runners and librarians and 800 schools took part.
Sue Baker OBE, Director of Time to Change, said: “People still think there is no right time or place to talk about mental health – that it’s something that should be whispered about in quiet corners. We all need to work hard to change and remove the barriers to talking. Conversations have the power to change lives, wherever they take place. So whether you’re at home, at work, in the cinema, or even in the car, Time to Talk Day was the perfect chance to be more open about mental health.”