North Yorkshire County Council - County Hall, Northallerton
North Yorkshire Council - County Hall, Northallerton

Become a champion and help to fight the stigma of mental ill health

15 January 2018

A new project designed to help to tackle the stigma associated with mental ill health and encourage people to open up and talk about it is being funded by North Yorkshire County Council.

As part of its work to improve the health and wellbeing of people in the county, the County Council is working with mental health charity Scarborough Survivors on a project to ask adults with experience of mental ill health to get in touch and become mental health champions. They want to work with them to encourage people across the county to have more conversations on the subject to help to reduce the stigma associated with mental illness.

This approach is consistent with the national approach to tackling the stigma and discrimination that people with mental ill-health may experience. The project itself was developed using feedback from North Yorkshire people on what would help to reduce stigma.

To help to make this happen, grants of between £100 and £500 are available to people who sign up to become a champion.  A champion will run an event or activity in their local community where the main aim is for people to talk about their mental health. Successful applicants will receive full training and ongoing support.

County Councillor Caroline Dickinson, Executive Member for Public Health, said:

Encouraging people to talk about mental health is important. These recommendations are being implemented as part of our mental health strategy called Hope, Control and Choice, which sets out our vision and priorities for county-wide mental health services, created in collaboration with users of those services.



Scarborough Survivors Project coordinator Christine Mackay said:

Mental illness affects one in four people. Any one of us can be affected at any time. By talking more about our experiences we will be less isolated and feel better supported to manage our mental wellbeing.


The champions project is funded by North Yorkshire County Council Public Health Team as part of its work to support the national Time to Change initiative.

There are three funding application submission dates in 2018: 31 January, 30 April and 31 August.

For further information and an application pack, contact Scarborough Survivors at 9 Alma Square, YO11 1JR, ring 01723 500222 or email



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