We’ve gathered here a lot of great resources available to churches who want to think and pray about responding to Mental Health or Loneliness that they see in their communities.

We have linked to charities that provide resources; in some cases there are downloadable resource and we’ve also showcased some churches in the Diocese who are doing this work.

The list isn’t comprehensive so please:

  • if there’s something you have come across that is great that we have missed…let us know!

  • if your church or community is doing something awesome to support people around mental health, wellbeing, isolation, abuse or loneliness, no matter how big or small….don’t hide your light under a bushel. Tell us!

We’d love to have a chat, or come visit and find out more.

Mental Health First Aid Training

The Diocese of London has committed to introducing FREE Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) training and is now able to offer it to every church and chaplaincy.

This two day course qualifies you to become a Mental Health First Aider in your setting. The training covers:

  • Session 1 – Mental Health First Aid, mental health, and depression.
  • Session 2 – Depression (cont.) and suicidal crisis.
  • Session 3 – Anxiety, eating disorders, and self-harm.
  • Session 4 – Psychosis, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and MHFA action planning.

It is being rolled out via Area Teams: to find out more and book, please contact your Area Dean. Or if you don’t know who that is, get in touch with us and we can pass on your request.

BLOG:

What is Mental Health First Aid? By Ben Evans,

VIDEO:

[St Mary’s Stoke Newington: Forming our new Mission Action Plan in the light of Mental Health First Aid

Wellbeing & Mental Health Courses for Churches

There’s a wealth of resources out there if you’d like to run a course around Mental Health and Wellbeing in your church or in your communities.

Sanctuary Mental Health Ministries UK

Sanctuary UK offer free resources to equip the church to support Mental Health and Wellbeing. They include the Sanctuary Course, as well as a Sanctuary Course for Catholics: for anyone who wants to learn about faith and mental health. It requires no previous training or expertise. The course is an eight-week study guide for small groups. Each week participants gather together, read through the content, watch a film, and engage in conversation, reflection, and prayer.

They also provide resources around Faith, Grief & Covid 19, and Race & Mental Health.

More information

Kintsugi Hope “Wellbeing Groups”

Training is available to run a 12 week “Wellbeing Group” course with a small group. The Wellbeing Groups aim to provide a safe and supportive space for people who feel or have felt overwhelmed, providing tools for self-management in a facilitated peer mentoring style setting. Issues covered include; disappointment, loss, anxiety, anger, perfectionism, shame and resilience

More information

Wellbeing Journey from Hope Together

This new resource from Hope Together is an 8 week video course covering a range of topics on Wellbeing.

More information

VIDEO:

John Keble Church, Mill Hill: Reflections on runnning a Grief and Covid 19 course from Sanctuary Mental Health Ministries

Living With Dementia

A workshop by Charlotte Evans, Story Chaplain exploring how churches can support those living with dementia and their carers, particularly given the last year that we have all lived through.

This was recorded in April 2021.

Resources from this session are downloadable below.

Story Chaplain

Charlotte Evans runs “Story Chaplain”- trying to offer everyday creativity and meaningful moments for people living with dementia, and everyone.

Find out more

Anna Chaplaincy

Our vision is to see an Anna Chaplain in every small- and medium-sized community in the country, and for the Anna Chaplain name to become synonymous with spiritual care for older people.

Find out more

Mental Health and Young People

Supporting young people as they develop, particularly around their own mental wellbeing is more pressing than ever after the last couple of years. Here are some great organisations and resources that you can use in churches, youth groups, schools and uniformed organisations.

Headstrong from Youthscape

Headstrong is a new online space, run by YouthScape, aimed exclusively at young people with a focus on promoting positive mental wellbeing. Youthscape are also committed to supporting those who care for young people: youth workers, parents and church leaders around their young people’s mental health.

Find out more

Kintsugi Hope for Schools

Kintsugi Hope run online Youth Wellbeing courses, and train others to do the same.

Find out more

Managing Anxiety

The ReMind Course is for young people with high anxiety, taking a cognitive behavioural approach. You can train to be a facilitator of the course and find out more, and it can be run with young people in any setting.

Find out more

BLOGS:

Youthscape’s new project, ‘Headstrong’: Dr Kate Middleton introduces us to this online space aimed exclusively at young people with a focus on promoting positive mental wellbeing.

Michael at Bowes School Enfield: Kate Butcher, Headteacher shares something of the culture she has created at the school to prioritise children and staff wellbeing

VIDEOS:

St Saviours Sunbury: Offering Kintsugi Hope Course with youth groups in church

Mental Health and Global Majority Heritage

We know from multiple reports and research that those of us who are from a Global Majority Background are disproportionately affected by mental health issues.

  • Global Majority Heritage and UK Minority Ethnic people are 4 times more likely to be detained under the Mental Health Act.

  • Refugees and Asylum seekers in the UK also face huge challenges and trauma that can affect mental health, long after they are granted leave to remain and are able to settle. The current asylum system exacerbates this with it’s design.

  • The effects of COVID, lockdown and mental health challenges also had a disproportionate effect on those of us who are not white British.

Challenges such as racism, stigma and inequalities can affect the mental health of those from Global Majority Heritage, and what treatment and support they are offered.

Some resources specifically for those in these communities, and all those who are not but want to understand and support more are below:

Race and Mental Health Resource

Church of England’s UK Minority Ethnic Mental Health Toolkit

Mind’s Report of Race and Mental Health: Tipping the Scales

Grief & Covid Response

Sanctuary UK have produced a FREE resource “Grief, Faith and Covid: A Conversation. You can find out more and register for it HERE and download it to use it in small groups in churches.

Loss And Hope are a coalition of Christian organisations seeking to help the Church support those bereaved. One resource they use and recommend is “The Bereavement Journey” for those grieving particularly in the pandemic’s wake. A six week course for small groups.

BLOGS:

John Keble Church, Mill Hill: Reflections on runnning a Grief and Covid 19 course from Sanctuary Mental Health Ministries (blog coming soon)

Isolation & Loneliness in Older People

There are several charities that support churches to help tackle isolation particulary in those who are in the later years of their lives.

Some partners are below…

BLOGS

Linking Lives (blog coming soon)

Care Home Friends

VIDEOS

Joyfully Tackling Isolation at the Posh Club, St Pauls West Hackney

Wellbeing Spaces & Cafes

Through the Lent Appeal we are supporting Renew Wellbeing.

They help churches open spaces of welcome and inclusion in partnership with mental health teams to improve mental and emotional wellbeing.

Renew spaces are simple café style spaces run by local churches where hobbies and activities are shared or co-produced. Each café space is attached to a quiet room or prayer space where inner habits of wellbeing are shared. Each church partners with a mental health professional from the local council or other suitable organisation to ensure good inclusive practices for safe spaces where it’s OK not to be OK can be sustained.

Renew Wellbeing

Renew Wellbeing helps churches open spaces of welcome and inclusion in partnership with mental health teams to improve mental and emotional wellbeing.

Find out more

Places of Welcome

Places of Welcome is a growing network of local community groups providing their neighbourhoods with places where all people feel safe to connect, belong and contribute.

Find out more

BLOG

Ruth Rice, Renew Wellbeing’s founder, writes about the aims of Renew spaces.

VIDEO:

Hope Church Hounslow (formerly St Pauls Hounslow West) share the story of how their foodbank grew into a community cafe, which as become a space to talk about debt, struggles and mental health

Supporting Those Through Domestic Abuse

Our Lent Appeal is supporting Restored

Restored has a vision of a world where women live free from the fear of violence. They aim to speak up about the realities of violence against women and girls, and to equip the church to stand against domestic abuse and support survivors.

They run support groups for survivors of abuse, and help churches understand more about domestic abuse and its consequences, and equip churches to ensure they are places of welcome and not further harm for those who’ve experienced domestic abuse.

Their website has a wealth of brilliant resources, blogs and information.

Restored Beacons

Restored is building a network of churches, standing together against domestic abuse and supporting survivors: a network of ‘Restored Beacons’. Churches whose light guides survivors home to safety. A beacon that calls the people of God to stand together to fix that which is broken in their communities and live out a different way.

At its simplest, a Restored Beacon is a place of welcome and safety for survivors. A church willing and able to support those who have been let down by people who were meant to love them. You can see what becoming a “Restored Beacon” church means here.

We’d love to see churches across the Diocese become “Restored Beacon” churches.
We have a partnership with Restored, and therefore may be able to support you with the financial cost of that if that is a barrier. Please do get in touch with us here if that is something you’d like to explore.

BLOG

Bekah Legg, CEO of Restored, gives us an introduction to their work.