Mental Health Awareness Week 9–15th May 2022
It’s Mental Health Awareness Week and the subject this year is loneliness.
We all experience loneliness. I’ve been there. When my children were young I felt quite isolated. And with a baby that didn’t sleep I was often exhausted, overwhelmed and anxious. Even when I did go out I found it hard to connect with people. I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s felt lonely in a room full of people?
I wanted to get back to feeling more like myself, which meant doing things for myself. So I started volunteering locally and it really helped me. Even though I was still tired, having something totally different to think about was energising. I enjoyed having a purpose which didn’t involve poopy bums. And I was pleased that the groups I volunteered with valued my skills (and reminded me that I had skills!). I also met a lot of new people from all walks of life and I generally felt a greater sense of belonging in my community.
Then the pandemic turned life upside down. Clubs and social groups were cancelled, you couldn’t meet people outside your bubble and isolation was a reality for many people. It’s not always easy to re-establish the social connections that have been lost over the last two years.
Part of mental health awareness week is looking at what practical steps we can take to address loneliness. My experience of volunteering was a really positive one.
If you want to give volunteering with us a go we’d be really pleased to hear from you. There’s no minimum time commitment, you’ll get to meet other people from the community that you might not meet otherwise, and you can choose something that suits your interests for example, bookkeeping, fundraising, gardening, or baking.
And of course, by volunteering with us to deliver the Cherry Hinton Hub you will be helping other members of our community to feel less isolated. You will be helping to bring this essential new resource to Cherry Hinton including The Cherry Branch, our new community café.
Please do get in touch for a chat about volunteering: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you can support us by donating, please visit our Just Giving page.