As World Mental Health Day approaches, Adult Education Wolverhampton is highlighting the important role learning has to play on people’s mental health and wellbeing.

Adult Education Wolverhampton runs a series of Like Minds courses devoted to improving people’s health and wellbeing by helping them gain new skills and develop their confidence and resilience. The courses are free via a referral from a healthcare professional.

Councillor Dr Michael Hardacre, the City of Wolverhampton Council’s Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, said: “The Like Minds courses are devoted to helping improve your mental health, providing you with an opportunity to take part in group activities and connect with others in a similar situation. 

“I’m pleased to say that dozens of students have transformed their lives through the Like Minds programme and are enjoying better health and wellbeing as a result.”

Among them is Marie Smith, a Like Minds and former Access to Higher Education Diploma Art and Design student. She said: “Learning has transformed every part of my life. Starting to learn about something that I love gave me a reason to get up in the morning and a reason to live. 

“There were times in the recent past where my depression stopped me from doing many daily activities, but my self esteem has grown and learning with others has given me the chance to build close friendships.

“I am able to set goals for myself and I know that they are achievable. My future is bright and through learning I know everything is achievable. I can actually say that education has saved my life.”

Fellow Like Minds student Kate Hubbard added: “I had exceptionally low confidence and self esteem and was terrified turning up to my first class at Adult Education Wolverhampton. 

“Reassured by another student, I overcame my fears and joined in. From there, I grew in confidence and my creative flair began to flourish as I attended more classes. 

“Learning has opened up new possibilities for a future career and my long-term plan is to work in a creative field. Now I’m back on the right track, loving life and all that it might hold for me.” 

To find out more about the Like Minds courses, and other ways in which Adult Education Wolverhampton can support you to improve your mental health, please visit Adult Education Wolverhampton or call 01902 558180.

World Mental Health Day takes place on Saturday 10 October, 2020.