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Carlisle Eden Mind launch ‘Share a Smile’ mental health campaign

Queen Elizabeth Grammar School L-R: Gemma Wright, Han Cheng Liu, Lydia Richardson, Jacob Reid, Kate Borlos and Callum Campbell

Share a Smile promises to be as the name portrays, a vibrant local campaign to celebrate the nature of random acts of kindness, encourage an Eden-wide movement of these uplifting acts, and use this to contribute to the ongoing effort of destigmatising mental health.

The project, coordinated by Carlisle Eden Mind, is being driven by a group of 29 sixth form students from Ullswater Community College, Queen Elizabeth Grammar School, Appleby Grammar School and Kirby Stephen Grammar. These students are united and inspired by an excitement to make a meaningful difference in the local community, especially on an issue with such importance as mental health.

Appleby Grammar School L-R: Tallulah Babayan-Taylor, Laura Chambers, Cameron Cullen, James Dunham, Erin Smith and Alex Parkin
Kirkby Stephen Grammar School L-R: Stuart Wells, Harry Mayer, Donnie Beswick, Emma Simpson, Emma Thorpe and Aimee Howarth

The year-long campaign is launching week commencing 4th February to coincide with this year’s Time To Talk Day, a day all about bringing people together, just for five minutes over a cup of tea, to have a conversation about mental health.

First of all, the group will receive Youth Mental Health First Aid training from Carlisle Eden Mind. This will facilitate them to go into and support local primary schools to foster an ethos random acts of kindness. The main event will be a Random Act of Kindness week, aimed at inspiring the Eden community to receive and share random acts of kindness. The group hopes that this in itself will foster a positive spirit within the community, and will also give Eden the platform to discuss and help to destigmatise the important topic of mental health.

Ullswater Community College L-R: Rebecca Davidson, Megan Fawcett, Shannon Iceton, Emma Noble, Kally Land, Louise Airey and Alice Christy

Share a Smile is being funded by Eden Local Committee’s Children and Young People’s Working Group, part of Cumbria County Council. Members of this working group meet regularly to discuss issues relating to children young people in Eden, and following discussions with a range of stakeholders, including Public Health Nurses, Active Cumbria and Carlisle Eden Mind, they wanted to set up and fund this project with the aim of increasing the emotional resilience of children and young people in Eden.

This is an exciting and important local campaign run by enthusiastic young people- so watch this space!

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