Take Time to Talk about mental health

One in four of us will experience a mental health problem at some point in our lives. Yet many of us do not know how to go about getting help. It can be overwhelming, and sadly many people with mental health problems still worry about facing stigma. 

That’s why West London CCG has made dramatic improvements to the old Primary Care Mental Health Service, following engagement with key stakeholders. The newly revamped service will be launched this month under the new name Take Time to Talk, across Kensington & Chelsea and Queens Park & Paddington, to make it as easy and stress-free as possible for residents to access the mental health support they deserve.

Take Time to Talk will be launched with a series of events throughout March. The friendly, professional team will be on hand at all events to discuss the service and how to access it.

Seeking help can be daunting. With our proactive, face-to-face approach, we aim to fight the stigma of openly discussing mental health, and make therapy as accessible as we can.

For example, therapy can be provided from locations with easy access for disabled people. Farsi-speaking and Arabic-speaking therapists are available, and therapy in other languages can be arranged on request (subject to capacity).

The first event, St Patricks Day at the Beethoven Centre, is being held this afternoon from 3-6pm and future events will be held on the following dates:

-          Wednesday 18 March – BME Forum at The Lighthouse (10-1pm)

-          Friday 20 March – The Older Adults Health Fair at Kensington Town Hall (10-4pm)

All venues are accessible for attendees with disabilities. Refreshments will be available.

Take Time to Talk is about placing talking therapies and other avenues of support within reach of as many people as possible before they come to a more severe crisis point. It isn’t an emergency service. If you or someone you know is severely unwell and in danger, then you should contact your GP or the Central and North West London Urgent Helpline on 0800 0234 650.

Dr Fiona Butler, chair of West London CCG and clinical lead on mental health, said:  “Taking the first step towards getting help for a mental health problem can be overwhelming. Many people simply don’t know where to begin.

“Take Time to Talk is about making sure that talking therapies and other avenues of support are accessible to everybody who needs them, when they need them.

 “Sadly there is still an element of stigma around openly discussing mental health. We are determined to challenge that stigma head on with Take Time to Talk.”

FAQs

Q: “I work full-time; will I have time for talking therapy?" 

A: Our Take Time to Talk services are available from 8am until 8pm to help people fit them around their working week. 

Q: "There are people with much worse problems, who need resources more than I do; are my mental health issues really serious enough for me to access support?”

A: Many people experiencing anxiety, stress, or depression feel as if there problems aren’t serious enough to ‘justify’ getting help. This is not true. Getting help early on means it will be easier to manage your symptoms from the start, before they get worse. Feeling that you don’t deserve help can be a symptom of depression itself. 

Q: “I live a normal life! How can I have a mental health problem?”

A: Mental health problems are common. One in four of us will experience a mental health problem at some point in our lives. There’s nothing ‘abnormal’ about it, and nobody should feel ashamed of seeking help. Just like with physical illness, it is a good idea to speak to a professional when you experience stress, anxiety or depression to stop such problems from getting worse.

Q: “I’m a strong person, so why would I need therapy?”

A: It takes a lot of strength and courage to take the first steps towards accessing mental health services. There is nothing ‘weak’ about seeking support any more than going to a pharmacist if you have flu is a sign of weakness.

Additional notes

  1. Take Time to Talk is a partnership supported by Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust, Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust and Depression Alliance.
  2. The Beethoven Centre is located at: 3rd Ave, London W10 4JL
  3. The Lighthouse is located at: 111-117 Lancaster Road, London,W11 1QT
  4. Kensington Town Hall is located at: Hornton Street, London W8 7NX
  5. The launch of our Take Time To Talk website (www.take-time-to-talk.com) is soon to follow. 

 

CCG Press Office

media@nw.london.nhs.uk

T: 020 3350 4224