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Birmingham and Solihull Mental health NHS Foundation Trust
Better Together

Free and confidential support to help you cope with life’s ups and downs

Published: 12/05/2016

Birmingham Healthy Minds is supporting this year’s Mental Health Awareness week by highlighting the many ways that people in Birmingham can access free and confidential NHS advice, support and treatment that could help build better relationships.

Relationships, at home and at work, play a significant part in developing good health and wellbeing. However, it is sometimes very difficult to build good relationships when trying to cope with life’s pressures that can lead to worry, stress, anxiety, low mood or depression.

In Birmingham, there is a free and confidential NHS service, Birmingham Healthy Minds, to provide advice and support that help people learn coping strategies and manage symptoms by using a variety of interventions such as anxiety and stress management courses, computerised cognitive behavioural therapy (cCBT), as well as group interventions for self-esteem, mindfulness and one-to-one talking therapies.

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Jo Gill, Consultant Clinical Lead for Birmingham Healthy Minds, said: “This year’s Mental Health Foundation’s Mental Health Awareness week emphasises the importance of good relationships and the part that they play in maintaining overall health and wellbeing.

“There are all sorts of factors that can create barriers and prevent us from forming positive relationships, including common mental health problems such as stress, anxiety, worry and depression as well life changing events, which could be the loss of a loved one, changes of employment or increasing financial difficulties.  There may be times where you simply do not understand why you are feeling low in mood, tearful, nervous, anxious, worried or isolated.

“However you are feeling, for whatever reason, it can also be very difficult to ask for help. Our team of dedicated NHS professionals are here to advise and guide you through the first steps towards getting the right support for you that can help you to build healthy relationships with the people in your life.
“Our free and confidential services across Birmingham can be accessed in a variety of ways, at a time and place that is convenient for different lifestyles, and is available to anyone who is aged 16 and over who is registered with a GP in Birmingham.”

Amanda Gatherer, Director of Psychological Services and Head of Psychology at Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Experiencing mental health problems, which can cause problems in building healthy relationships, is extremely common. It is estimated that one in four people in the UK will be living with a condition at some point in their lives and early intervention is vital to support people towards recovery and prevent deterioration in health and relationships.

“This year’s Mental Health Awareness week is asking us all to find a bit of time to make a relationship resolution and to think about how much time that we are able to give to spend time and listen to their friends, family and colleagues. If anyone is finding it hard, due to life’s pressures, to maintain relationships with people in their lives, we are here to offer support to therapies that can help you cope with life’s ups and downs.”  

Accessing the services provided by Birmingham Healthy Minds couldn’t be easier. Referrals can be made by GPs in Birmingham or there are many options available for getting in touch directly with the team by calling 0121 301 2525 (between 9.30am and 4.30pm, Monday to Friday, excluding Bank Holidays), emailing* the team at

BHM@bsmhft.nhs.uk texting** @BHM@ to 60777 or by using the online referral form at www.birminghamhealthyminds.org where there are also many self-help advice booklets to download. There are also walk-in centres across Birmingham that can be accessed at a variety of times, without an appointment.  
Further details on Birmingham Healthy Minds’ services, including walk-in centre locations and opening times, can be found at www.birminghamhealthyminds.org

*Please be aware that should you choose to email us we cannot guarantee the security of the contents of your email while in transit to us. **By texting us on 60777, you are agreeing for Birmingham Healthy Minds to contact you (who are part of Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust) to receive further information on our service. This will cost you the price of standard rate text message.