WHO ARE MIND BLMK AND WHAT DOES IT DO?
Mind BLMK’s aim is to ensure that no one has to face a mental health challenge alone. Working closely with a variety of partners, they offer a number of activities from their wellbeing centres and local venues, to make a difference to the mental health and wellbeing of adults in Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes. Their services range from counselling and resilience building, to mentoring, crisis support, workplace support and recovery support.
Despite being part of a national, recognisable charitable, Mind BLMK is funded independently and relies on the on-going support of organisations like Milton Keynes Community Foundation. Indeed, since council cuts local fundraising and grants have been an essential source of revenue.
WHAT WAS THE PROBLEM?
The face-to-face support that Mind BLMK gives became untenable given the government’s directive for isolation. It meant that Mind BLMK were initially no longer able offer their paid for face-to-face support and the effect of this was twofold. Firstly, those clients would have now have no support network and secondly, was the loss of income that this paid for service generates.
A consequence of isolation is the often limited amount of space available for individuals to talk both privately and safely. Sadly that ‘safe place’, critical to so many for their face-to-face counselling sessions, was no longer available.
Due to the sensitive nature of the counselling sessions previously taking place, Mind BLMK has had to make modifications to how they support people currently in Milton Keynes, in order to ensure service-users are safe and any conversations are as confidential as possible when receiving support remotely.
During this time, Mind BLMK have seen individuals making contact due to multiple mental health and well-being needs including, an increase in anxiety, depression, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, stress, Hoarding Disorder, and loneliness linked to isolation.