New centre will help with mental wellbeing

INITIATIVE: Mindskills course facilitators Beverley Haines (left) and Lizzie Cruddace with volunteers at Hartlepool and East Durham MIND.
INITIATIVE: Mindskills course facilitators Beverley Haines (left) and Lizzie Cruddace with volunteers at Hartlepool and East Durham MIND.

A CHARITY that aims to improve people’s mental health and wellbeing has been extended.

Hartlepool and East Durham MIND opened up new offices on the third floor of Lee House, in Peterlee town centre, yesterday.

Provision of the service in the former Easington district has been delivered from the East Durham Trust building, in Yoden Road for the past two years.

But the need for help was so great, that new offices, with more space, were set up.

Wellbeing trainer Elizabeth Cruddace said the service runs wellbeing workshops and courses and provides information about mental wellbeing, and helping to improve emotional wellbeing and resilience.

The initiative also helps people with anxiety, depression or low self-esteem through different techniques, including support in improving relaxation and positive psychology.

Elizabeth said around 150 people have been on the courses since 2012 and 40 people have been trained as volunteers.

She added that a number of volunteers and peer mentors have also been trained this week to support users of the service.

“Peer support is recognised as one of the best ways of improving emotional wellbeing,” said Elizabeth.
“It’s about people who have been there and come out the other side helping others.”

The scheme also uses activities like art classes and choirs, or a simple chat, to help with wellbeing.

The opening of the offices coincided with World Mental Health Day.

“We wanted to do something to celebrate that and show people of East Durham what we have to offer,” added Elizabeth.

“You don’t necessarily need to have mental health issues to participate – it’s all about being able to keep yourself well, if you are stressed at work, our courses could be brilliant for you as well.
“It’s been fairly positive so far and we have had a fair few people through the door.”

The new facility has one-to-one rooms, training rooms, an office and volunteer space.

To find out more, call (0191) 5861857.