Mental Health Awareness Week 2021

11 May, 2021

It’s Mental Health Awareness Week and this year’s theme is ‘Connect with Nature’. Mental health awareness is something we hold close to our hearts here at ICTheatre, our training ethos is built on a foundation of mindfulness and mental resilience, it’s at the core of what we do.

“During long months of the pandemic, millions of us turned to nature. Our research on the mental health impacts of the pandemic showed going for walks outside was one of our top coping strategies and 45% of us reported being in green spaces had been vital for our mental health.

It was as if we were re-discovering at our most fragile point our fundamental human need to connect with nature.”

‘There is something to be wondered at in all of Nature” – Aristotle

 

 

Nature is not a luxury. It is a resource that must be available for everyone to enjoy – as basic as having access to clean water or a safe roof over our heads. Local and national governments need to consider their role in making this a reality for everyone, and the Mental Health Foundation will be talking about how they can do so during the week.

 

So, what’s happening at ICTheatre this week?

At our #ICTheatreManchester campus the wonderful student support team are giving each of our Training Professionals a ‘grow your own sunflower’ to take home and nurture as well as some mindfulness colouring books.  Throughout the week they’ll be sharing the best places in Manchester to connect with nature.

They’ve also teamed up with BIMM Manchester Student Association with the following workshops:

Sign-up to all on BIMMManchesterStudents.com

 

  •  Yoga on Zoom –  This 1 hour session will look at releasing tension from your neck and shoulders, leaving you feeling calm, relaxed and energised.
  • Tuesday: Collect a DIY candle making kit from Bank Chambers Building Reception (limited number available).
  • Wednesday 1pm: Mindfulness Planting at Hulme Garden Centre – make a terracotta planter of herbs to take home with you at Hulme’s wonderful community gardens.
  • Thursday 7pm: Pub Club on Zoom – grabs some snacks or a drink and have a friendly chat on Zoom.
  • Friday 3pm: Pets on Zoom – come along to see some cute pets

 

At our #ICTheatreBrighton campus we will be hosting regular mindfulness and meditation sessions. We’ll also be sharing tips on using nature to better your mental health, including the follower from our in-house Mindset Coach:

‘We are so lucky to be living in Sussex right now, this Mental Health Awareness week, remembering to step out in nature even in the midst of projects is so important:’

  • Go on a hike this weekend in the downs take a picnic and breathe. Explore.
  • Recalibrate your body and mind. It’s where all your creative ideas are formulated in the spaces between the busyness.
  • Stand on top of the world (the downs) or next to the sea and take some deep breaths shift your energy and reframe your perspective.
  • Invite someone that you know needs this to go with you. Good company and nature, it doesn’t get much better in lifting the spirits.
  • Be great to here about your trips? Even if they are only a couple of hours. Say yes to yourself.

 

Stories are the best tools we have to influence change. Unless we can demonstrate nature’s role in bringing solace and joy to our lives, it will remain under-valued and under-utilised.’

Join in by sharing your #ConnectWithNature stories on Instagram and tag @ICTheatreUK

For more information about this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week visit mentalhealth.org.uk/mhaw or join the conversation on social media using #ConnectWithNature and #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek

© 2021 ICTheatre
Institute for Contemporary Theatre