Harrogate College and Zero Carbon Harrogate are collaborating to support mental health, with regular climate cafés, which are open to anyone across the Harrogate District. These cafés will be the first of their kind in the district providing a simple, hospitable and empathetic space for individuals to express their fears and uncertainties about climate change.
The first climate café will be held online from 4-5pm, on Thursday 27 May, with future cafés planned to be held in person, once coronavirus restrictions have been lifted. Numbers for each session will be limited to ensure those attending have the space to talk, should they wish to do so.
Fiona Jones, Events Manager for Zero Carbon Harrogate, said:
This week is Mental Health Awareness Week, and as our understanding of the climate crisis grows, we believe it is important to acknowledge the complex emotions that can surface as a result of our deepening knowledge. These feelings are a natural and healthy response to what we see happening in the world today and it is crucial we give ourselves the time and space to explore and talk about these emotions.
Holly Hansen-Maughan, Performance and Project Co-ordinator at Harrogate College said:
As a college, our purpose is to serve our local community and that’s why we are really pleased to be working in collaboration with Zero Carbon Harrogate to do this. Climate Cafés are going to be small groups of people coming together to talk about their feelings around eco-anxiety.
These cafés follow on from an eco-anxiety webinar hosted by Zero Carbon Harrogate in April, where participants heard from Caroline Hickman, a psychotherapist & lecturer from the University of Bath and Climate Psychology Alliance, and Elouise Mayall, an Ecology Masters student from the University of East Anglia. Also taking part, to offer community-based support, were local mental health groups, including ‘Liferiders’ and ‘myLifePool Harrogate’.
More information and details of how to register for the climate cafés can be found at www.zerocarbonharrogate.org.uk/climate-cafes and on Zero Carbon Harrogate’s Facebook events page.