Groundbreaking Time to Change Roadshow visits the South West

Posted on 18th September, 2009

Time to Change is England’s most ambitious programme to end the discrimination faced by people who experience mental health problems. Touring the country throughout September and October, the Time to Change Roadshow has teamed up with Devon & Cornwall Constabulary and Devon Partnership NHS Trust to engage people across the South West to shift attitudes and join the campaign supported by celebrities like Stephen Fry, Ruby Wax and Patsy Palmer. Camilla Dallerup, the reigning Champion of BBC 1’s Strictly Come Dancing, will open the Time to Change Roadshow at 10.00am on Wednesday 23 September 2009 at Princesshay Shopping Centre, Exeter.  The Roadshow will be open until 6.00pm and invites the public to get involved by joining Camilla in adding their face to the biggest ‘visual pledge’ ever seen in England. The Roadshow includes an interactive stand where visitors can watch videos, have their photograph taken and be added to a digital pledge. Members of the public can sign up, and their face will become part of a huge mosaic that will be live on our website, www.time-to-change.org.uk/visualpledge, and will be used to show just how many people believe that it's time to change. To sign up, the public can visit www.facebook.com/timetochange and join today by clicking on the visual pledge tab. To find our more about what’s happening in Devon visit the Time to Change Devon facebook group. By taking the campaign to the South West, it creates opportunities for people with mental health problems, and those who have not been affected, to talk about the issues face to face. This will help those involved overcome the stigma and misunderstanding of a health issue that affects one in four people.  This new element of the £20m campaign introduces a type of interaction proven to break down barriers.  It will be an important tool in the fight against mental health stigma and discrimination. Paul Netherton, Assistant Chief Constable, from Devon & Cornwall Constabulary said: “Devon and Cornwall Police are committed to the Time to Change campaign and are keen to show national leadership and inspire other Forces to adopt a similar approach to challenging stigma and discrimination.” Iain Tulley, Chief Executive, from Devon Partnership NHS Trust adds: “As the organisation providing mental health services across Devon, we know only too well the stigma and discrimination people often face when experiencing mental health problems. Being involved in the Time to Change campaign enables us to raise the profile to try and end this type of discrimination. “The commitment and involvement to the campaign from Devon and Cornwall Police is one that, I hope, many other organisations in Devon will mirror, to show their commitment to this extremely important programme.” Sue Baker, Portfolio Director at Time to Change, says:  “We know that face to face contact with someone who has experienced a mental health problem, who can talk openly and confidently about it, is key to transforming our understanding and attitudes. Today’s events are a critical step in our journey to make mental health less of a taboo – much like cancer was thirty years ago. Many famous faces are behind our campaign, but we need everyday people like us to speak out as well.” Time to Change was launched in January with a national advertising campaign fronted by Stephen Fry, Ruby Wax and Alastair Campbell.  The campaign has also highlighted discrimination over the summer with the launch of Schizo – the movie, a spoof movie trailer, which showed that people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia can live full lives with the help of their friends and family.  The Time to Change campaign is England’s biggest and most ambitious programme to end mental health discrimination.   The campaign is run by leading mental health charities Mind and Rethink, and backed by £16 million from the Big Lottery Fund and £4 million from Comic Relief.

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