Artists Draw The Line On Mental Health Stigma
LONDON, February 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ –
British artists have put paintbrush to paper to support England’s biggest anti-stigma
programme, Time to Change, and are encouraging people to be more supportive of someone
experiencing a mental health problem
[http://www.time-to-change.org.uk/talk-about-mental-health ]. This comes as new research
has shown that only one in four people who have experienced a mental health problem
have received a get well card during their illness, even though 80% say that a card would
be a good way for others to let them know they are thinking of them.
Every year, millions of cards are sent to support friends and family members when
they’re unwell. Yet, although 79% of the public would consider sending a card to someone
with a physical health problem, only 50% would do the same if it related to mental health.
Around a third (32%) wouldn’t know if it were appropriate.
Contemporary British artist Stuart Semple and cartoonist Stephen Collins have created
exclusive ‘get well soon’ cards, which will be used as part of the Time to Change
campaign, run by the charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness, alongside advertising
running throughout February.
Both artists have used their unique style to explore how we approach conversations on
physical health problems compared to mental illness. These new designs highlight the
importance of staying in contact and being supportive when friends and family members
experience a mental health problem.
Leading British artistStuart Semplesays: ‘There is still so much silence around the
subject of mental health, yet it’s something that can affect all of us at some point in
our lives. People don’t seem to receive get well cards when they have a mental health
problem and it’s a shame that it’s still such a taboo subject. Whether it’s a note of
support, or just reminding someone you care, these small things can make a big difference.
I hope the designs I’ve made help those who receive them know that they are loved and that
there are people around them that care. That’s such a simple yet powerful thing.’
Illustrator Stephen Collins,whois best known for his regular cartoons in the Guardian
and Prospect magazine,says: ‘The idea behind my design is how people experiencing
depression [http://www.time-to-change.org.uk/category/blog/depression ] often say they
feel like they’re ‘underwater’, with the normal world going on above, so I wanted to
create an optimistic image based around that. As one in four people experience a mental
health problem in any given year, it is something we should all become more open about so
that we can help those around us who need our support.’
Sue Baker,Director of Time to Change says: “When you’re dealing with a mental health
problem, you need the support of friends and family more than ever. But people can feel
awkward around the subject and unsure of what to do. Sending a card is a simple way of
letting someone know you’re there for them. We often hear people say that when they are
off work with a physical illness they are inundated with cards and flowers, but with a
mental health problem, there is only silence. We should be treating people no
The new card designs will be available as downloadable e-cards on the Time to Change
website from 20th of February 2013. Find out how to start your conversation at
http://www.time-to-change.org.uk/talk-about-mental-health or tweet #timetotalk.
 The Time to Change survey was conducted online using SurveyMonkey between 19th
December and 31st December 2012 and was completed by a total of 1,429 people in the UK
with experience of a mental health problem. A link to the survey was distributed via Time
to Change Facebook fans and on Twitter.
 YouGov survey on behalf of Time to Change is taken from fieldwork undertaken
between 26th and 28th November 2012. Total sample size was 2,005 adults. The survey was
carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults
About Time to Change
Time to Change is England’s most ambitious programme to end the stigma and
discrimination faced by people with mental health problems. The programme is run by the
charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness, and funded by the Department of Health and
Comic Relief. For more information go to http://www.time-to-change.org.uk
SOURCE Time to Change