The Campaign Against Living Miserably are a charity and support service fighting against suicide. Suicide is the single biggest killer of men under 45 in the UK and the cause of 18 deaths every day.
Since the lockdown started back in March, CALM have reported that they have received 19,249 calls and webchats, and directly prevented 80 suicides. A recent survey also found that 43 per cent of people felt that the current coronavirus pandemic and UK lockdown has had a “significant negative impact on how they feel every day”.
“It’s become clear in the past two months that alongside the physical health crisis we’re facing, we urgently need to think about the mental health implications too,” said CALM CEO Simon Gunning. “While we all adapt to a new normal and then the newer new normal, we’ll be there to help anyone who needs our support.
“We know that as lockdown and the effects of coronavirus continue, the challenges will shift and evolve – and we’ll shift and evolve with them to ensure we can continue to provide the support needed during this challenging and unpredictable time.”
Speaking of the unique mental health issues that have arisen with the pandemic, Gunning said: “We’ve spoken to frontline workers dealing with traumatic situations everyday, while also contending with their own worries and anxieties. We’ve spoken to people who are feeling confused, nervous, angry, frustrated and helpless, as well as people facing difficult life situations.
“We’ve spoken to those in strained relationships and with nowhere to go, to people who have suffered domestic abuse, and to people whose anxiety continues to rise because of the uncertainty or loneliness they are facing. We have talked people through job-loss, grief and health concerns, providing practical support to anyone who needs it.”
Gunning concluded that as the world comes to terms with “the new normal” of the ever changing conditions of the pandemic, CALM felt encouraged by how open people at large were being about their mental health.
“While it’s clear that our services are in more demand than ever before, it’s also the case that more people than ever are talking about mental wellbeing, and making it an everyday priority across workplaces, homes and society – something I hope will continue long after this challenging period is over,” Gunning added.
“No matter what happens in the coming weeks, months and years, our helpline and services will continue to be here whatever the future brings, so if you need to talk, we’ll be there to help.”
CALM can be reached by calling 0800 58 58 58 or via their webchat service from 5pm-midnight every night.
Today also saw CALM announce that they were teaming with Spotify to launch a week’s worth of dedicated content for Mental Health Awareness Week (May 18- 24). Throughout this week, fans can enjoy specially curated playlists, podcasts and more to promote mindfulness and positive mental health – with contributions from the likes of Tinie Tempah, Ray BLK, Ms Banks, Che Lingo, Harry Pinero and more.
FOR HELP AND ADVICE ON MENTAL HEALTH:
- ‘Am I depressed?’ – help and advice on mental health and what to do next
- YOUNG MINDS – The voice for young people’s health and wellbeing
- MIND – For mental health support, advice and awareness
- CALM – The Campaign Against Living Miserably for young men
- Time To Change – Let’s end mental health discrimination
- The Samaritans – Confidential support 24 hours a day