People in Wolverhampton are being encouraged to take 5 simple steps to wellbeing - from becoming more active to learning something new.

Next week is Mental Health Awareness Week, and health chiefs say residents can help to improve their own mental health by following the internationally recognised Five Ways to Wellbeing.

Developed by the New Economic Foundation, a think tank promoting social, economic and environmental justice, the Five Ways to Wellbeing are:

  • Connect... with the people around you, with family, friends, colleagues and neighbours, at home, work, school or in your local community. Building these connections will support and enrich you every day.
  • Be active. Go for a walk or run, step outside, cycle, play a sport, do the gardening, dance. Exercising makes you feel food. Discover a physical activity that you enjoy, one that suits your level of mobility and fitness.
  • Take notice. Catch sight of the beautiful, remark on the unusual, note the changing seasons. Be aware of the world around you and what you are feeling. Reflecting on your experiences will help you appreciate what matters.
  • Keep learning. Try something new, rediscover an old interest and sign up for a course. Take on a different responsibility at work. Learning new things will make you more confident, as well as being fun to do.
  • Give. Do something nice for a friend or stranger. Thank someone, smile, volunteer your time or join a community group. Seeing yourself, and your happiness, linked to the wider community can be incredibly rewarding.

Councillor Sandra Samuels, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: "Sadly, 1 in 4 people in England will experience a mental health problem this year.

"Having good mental health is as important as good physical health - it affects how we think, feel and act, and helps determine how we handle stress and relate to others.

"These Five Ways to Wellbeing are simple steps that we can all take in our everyday lives, and what's more they have been proved to be very helpful in promoting mental wellbeing.

"We are fortunate that we have some fantastic sports facilities and parks and green spaces here in Wolverhampton, not to mention beautiful countryside on our doorstep, where we can enjoy exercise and quality family time.

"Learning something new is also a great way of improving people's mental health, and Wolverhampton's Adult Education Service has an excellent range of courses from arts and crafts to languages for people who want to develop their skills."

People struggling with mental health issues in Wolverhampton can get help and support from Wolverhampton Healthy Minds by calling 0800 923 0222 or 01902 441856 or visiting Type=links;Linkid=7165;Title=NHS - Healthy Minds;Target=_blank;, or MIND, the mental health charity, on 0300 123 3393 or via Type=links;Linkid=7166;Title=Mind;Target=_blank;.

They can also visit the Wolverhampton Community and Wellbeing Hub based at Epic Cafe, Lichfield Street, which offers a wide range of services to help people develop their skills, confidence and wellbeing. The hub is open from 10.30am to 7pm, Monday to Friday, and 10.30am to 3pm at weekends. Alternatively, please call 07811 848819 or visit Type=links;Linkid=7167;Title=Facebook - Community and Wellbeing Hub;Target=_blank;.

To find out more about the courses available through Wolverhampton's Adult Education Service, please call 01902 558180, log on to Type=links;Linkid=2102;Title=Adult Education Service;Target=_blank; or visit its next enrolment day at the Foyer building, City Learning Quarter, St Georges Parade, on Saturday 11 June, 2016 from 10am to 2pm.

For more details, please visit Type=links;Linkid=7168;Title=Five Ways to Wellbeing;Target=_blank;.

Mental Health Awareness Week 2016 is organised by the Mental Health Foundation and takes place from Monday to Sunday 16 to 22 May, with the theme of relationships. To find out more, please visit Type=links;Linkid=4556;Title=Mental Health Foundation;Target=_blank;.

  • released: Wednesday 11 May, 2016