With most people staying at home and many adjusting to life in social isolation, it’s never been more important to check in and look out for each other’s mental health.
Knowing how difficult it is to be apart from family and friends, STV is launching a new phase of the Britain Get Talking mental wellness campaign, encouraging families and friends to reach out to loved ones.
In partnership with ITV and backed by mental health charities SAMH (Scottish Association for Mental Health), YoungMinds and Mind, the campaign invites viewers to pick up the phone to friends and family and share messages of love and support on social media using the hashtag #BritainGetTalking and tagging @WeAreSTV.
A selection of these messages will be broadcast on STV, alongside some famous faces with their own messages of support. These will start to appear from this weekend, starting with STV’s entertainment presenter, Laura Boyd.
The Britain Get Talking campaign urges people to have positive conversations and, ultimately, keep talking about what is on their mind during this challenging time.
Simon Pitts, Chief Executive of STV, said: “It’s never been more important to stay in touch with friends and loved ones to protect our mental health. This next phase of the Britain Get Talking campaign will connect our viewers on-air by sharing their messages of support with the 4 million people across Scotland who watch STV each month. So please get recording and uploading.
“Simply hearing someone’s voice has been shown to reduce stress levels and improve mental wellbeing, and letting those who are struggling know there is support out there for them is vital. We’re very proud to be working with mental health charities, SAMH, Mind and Young Minds, to help share these important messages with the nation.”
Billy Watson, Chief Executive at SAMH, said: “Many of us now need to spend much more time at home, possibly isolated from family, friends and loved ones; so we’re pleased to see our partner STV encouraging people to reach out to their loved ones through the Britain Get Talking campaign.
“It’s crucial that during these difficult times that we do what we can to reduce isolation and to prioritise wellbeing. Even though we need to limit socialising, we can still make connections – a text, phone call or video chat could make a big difference to the mental health of us all.”
Messages should be uploaded to social channels, tagging @WeAreSTV and #britaingettalking. As some of these will be used on-air, ideal timings for videos are 10-15, 20-25 or 50-55 second films. These should be recorded on smart phones preferably in portrait mode and with no background noise – if at all possible.
You can visit the SAMH coronavirus and mental wellbeing information hub at samh.org.uk/coronavirus.
Watch STV’s Laura Boyd’s message for her mum here.
Britain Get Talking is part of STV’s wider campaign for mental wellness which draws inspiration from the New Economics Foundation’s Five Ways to Wellbeing, emphasising promoting behaviour change through small, regular actions that positively support mental health.