Mental health services from across the district are coming together to help raise awareness of what support is available and how people can access this help for themselves or a loved one.

Services from Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust, in partnership with Sharing Voices, recognise that people from a Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) community may not always be seeking the right mental health support that is needed so have teamed up to help people learn what support is available and how to access it.

Razia Akhtar, Clinical Psychologist at Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust said: “This event is targeted at people from a BAME background. Within all communities, but particularly BAME communities, there can be a stigma attached to mental illness and people that need support can be hesitant to access the care that they need. By running this event we want to break down those barriers and make people realise that mental health is just the same as physical health, it does not discriminate, and anyone can suffer from problems at any time in their life.

It’s important that people know what signs to look out for in themselves and their loved ones and know how to access that support if they think it is needed. Getting help early can really help someone get better a lot quicker.”

Alyas Karmani, Chairperson at Sharing Voices, said: “It is essential that we create safe spaces to overcome both the stigma associated with mental illness as well as potential bias and discrimination directed towards people from diverse BAME backgrounds.

This event is a vitally important step in creating real partnerships between BAME communities, psychological therapies and counselling service providers in Bradford.”

Attendees on the day will be able to: learn more about different mental health difficulties; find out about mental health services in Bradford and how to access them; learn more about how to get psychological therapy and how it could help you or someone you know; try out interactive exercises like those used in therapy sessions; ask questions to mental health professionals directly and have your say on how to improve mental health services.

The event takes place on Monday 15 July between 9.30am – 1.30pm at Carlisle Business Centre, Bradford. Lunch will be provided and it is free to attend, book your ticket by emailing or visiting Eventbrite.