Mental health in lockdown: Friendly Places Online
Credit: Posted by Jeremy Simmons, Policy and Programme Officer, FaithAction.
Perhaps it is unsurprising that the past 12 months—a time of so much change, uncertainty and tragedy—has seen an increased concern for the mental health of our population. We’ve all experienced alterations to our normal routines, national lockdowns limiting in-person contact with one another, and the threat—or reality—of the loss of our loved ones to disease. Whilst it seems that the younger generation have been hit particularly hard—the Prince’s Trust and Tesco Youth Index recently reported that 1 in 4 young people have admitted to feeling “unable to cope with life” since the pandemic began—in one way or another, the mental health implications of COVID-19 concern all of us.
So what can be done? If the full impact of the pandemic on mental health remains to be seen, faith-based organisations can certainly play an important part in supporting the nation’s recovery. At FaithAction, we’ve long been aware of the ways that faith groups can help people struggling with their mental health, and our Friendly Places pledge—a commitment for faith centres and places of worship to become safe spaces for those struggling—is a useful tool to this end.
Read more about Friendly Places, including examples and tips here.