Empowering Communities and Nurturing Mental Well-being
“Mental Health Awareness Week provides an opportunity for us to reflect on the importance of supporting one another to overcome these uncertain times and nurturing our own well-being”. Anna Fosse-Galtier, RJ4All Community Centre Manager shared.
At RJ4All, we believe in the significance of mental health and have been dedicated to making a positive impact on the SE16 post-code area. As we celebrated Mental Health Awareness Week last week, we wanted to share how RJ4All with its stakeholders and local community has been working together in addressing mental health issues, including for example rising anxiety and stress.
There are many reasons which have led to a drastic rise in the need for mental health support, including the impact of COVID-19, isolation, loneliness, poverty, and growing unemployment. In light of this, RJ4All has been promoting and delivering creative projects which can positively impact our community and improve wellbeing.
Therapy for Mental Health
RJ4All offers specialised mental health support through one-to-one therapy sessions at our Community Centre and remote assistance through telephone and online platforms. By making mental health services accessible, RJ4All empowers individuals to seek help and effectively manage their anxiety.
Community Engagement and Combating Loneliness
Recognising the detrimental effects of isolation and loneliness on mental health, RJ4All is planning regular evening sessions at our centre. This will continue the engagement we have had with residents by providing them with a warm hub during the winter, with a safe and social place during the rest of the year. These sessions will foster connection, bringing together individuals from different generations and cultures. By utilsing restorative justice dialogue and providing food bank and community fridge, RJ4All creates an inclusive environment that combats loneliness and promotes social cohesion.
Sport and Well-being
Recognising the positive impact of physical activity on mental well-being, RJ4All has implemented an inclusive and accessible community gym initiative to promote social cohesion and improve well-being. Through one-to-one support, small group classes, and online instruction video resources, RJ4All strives to increase access to fitness opportunities and promote active lifestyles. We especially focus on individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, who often face socio-economic barriers, discrimination, and inequality.
Warm, Happy, and Connected community hub
Recognising the complex socio-economic context and the need for immediate support, we launched the Warm, Happy, and Connected project. We extended our opening hours and organised weekly activities that catered to the diverse needs of our community. From social coffee and tea mornings to music sessions, fitness classes, and clothes mending workshops, we aimed to create a warm and inviting space where individuals could find support, relief, and a sense of belonging.
Enhancing Mental Health Through Restorative Art
Mental Health Matters is a ground-breaking project that combines the power of restorative justice and art to address mental health issues. With a strategic partnership of six organisations from the UK, Cyprus, Greece, Spain, and Hungary, Mental Health Matters is funded by Erasmus+ and coordinated by RJ4All. Our aim is to empower mental health professionals and artists with enhanced skills, knowledge, and to integrating restorative justice techniques into arts to facilitate the relief and social restoration of individuals with mental illness. The interesting project’s implementation and outcomes can be discovered through its comprehensive summary of experiences from the five countries involved.
While we look ahead, we are grateful for the support and collaboration we have received from esteemed donors such as Partnership Southwark funding for Social Prescribing, Neighbourhoods Fund – Southwark Council, London Catalyst. We are also inspired by the resilience and strength of our community.
As we concluded Mental Health Awareness Week, let us remember that mental health matters every day. We remain committed to our mission of empowering individuals, addressing power imbalances, and reducing health inequalities. By providing accessible mental health support, fostering community engagement, and promoting physical well-being, we strive to create a nurturing environment where individuals can flourish and thrive.
Check out our resources designed to address mental health issues:
- E-Book: Restorative justice art: A tool for mental health and healing
- E-Book: Four steps to restorative justice art practical guide
- CPD-certified E-Course: Enhance your knowledge and skills in mental health improvement through restorative justice practices.
- CPD-certified E-Course: Identifying and dealing with mental health issues in the aftermath of COVID-19.
Make a difference today by donating to support our vital work in promoting mental health: