Monday, 29 June 2020

HOW TO SUPPORT SOMEONE WITH A MENTAL HEALTH CONDITION | IN COLLABORATION WITH TIME TO CHANGE STORYCAMP 2020




by Aimee Wilson, Chair


This year, LEAPS are supporting Time To Change’s 2020 Storycamp where the organization will be sending out themes to inspire content. This week’s theme is ‘supporting someone with a mental health condition.’


As a mental health Blogger and Chair of LEAPS, I’m very passionate about the topic and the importance of educating people so that they are better placed to support someone who is struggling. Mental health is definitely one of those things in life where you really don’t know what another person is going through; especially if you have very little experience of things yourself. It’s also similar to physical pain in that everyone has a different level of tolerance and we shouldn’t judge one another for this difference. Instead, we should be supporting one another through difficult times.


A hugely overwhelming emotion that often goes hand in hand with feeling suicidal is loneliness and feeling isolated. It can be far too easy to feel as though you’re the only person going through something and that no one in the world can identify with how you’re feeling and what you’re thinking. At the same time, though, we usually don’t like to hear that others share our experiences because it’s saddening to think of someone else going through such hardship. Bit of a Catch-22.


Monday, 1 June 2020

VOLUNTEERS WEEK 2020 - A THANK YOU TO OUR VOLUNTEERS FROM THE CHAIR




So, it’s Volunteers Week this week (1st – 7th June) and as Chair of LEAPS, I thought it would be a brilliant opportunity to talk a bit about what it’s like to volunteer with LEAPS and to thank all of the volunteers (Committee members) at LEAPS!


I first joined LEAPS about three or four years ago after seeing the voluntary position of Advertising Assistant posted on the do-it.org website! I’d been blogging on my mental health blog (www.imnotdisordered.co.uk) since 2013 and it had taught me that my passion lay in all things social media, publicity, comms, and advertising. Up until LEAPS, I’d only ever volunteered in retail and now I knew the direction I’d like my career to go in, I realised that continuing with that sort of role wasn’t really a productive use of my time.



I was so nervous to go to my interview because it would be my first role in this kind of industry so I had very little confidence and was terrified that those interviewing me (the Founder of LEAPS and the previous Chair), would see that I had no experience and deem me unworthy of the position! Fortunately, the success of my blog helped shine through as evidence that I have the skills to take on such a role. Their confidence in me and that they were willing to give me a chance in offering me the position, really boosted my self-esteem and gave me the motivation to prove them right and work hard at my responsibilities to help advertise and publicise the organisation.

Sunday, 17 May 2020

MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS WEEK 2020 | THE IMPORTANCE OF KINDNESS & FIVE WAYS TO BE KIND






This year’s Week will be like no other because for the first time in the twenty years that the Mental Health Foundation has been hosting this Week, they have changed the theme! Originally, the theme was scheduled to be ‘sleep’ but in response to the Coronavirus Pandemic and subsequent lockdown, the Foundation changed the theme to ‘kindness.’ The Foundation’s Chief Executive Mark Rowland said of the decision; ‘now more than ever, we need to re-discover kindness in our daily lives.’


LEAPS – as an organisation who regularly carries out acts of kindness – greatly support the decision to change the theme and are so excited to talk to you about the importance of kindness and share with you our top tips on ways to be kind:

Wednesday, 6 May 2020

LUNCH WITH LEAPS




As Chair, I’m very proud to announce the launch of our fundraising project: Lunch with LEAPS!


I remember in my interview with our former Chair and LEAPS Founder over three years ago, they discussed LEAPS ultimate goal of one day setting up some sort of food bank for the people in need in our local area of North Tyneside. Since that day in April 2017, I’ve wanted to make that dream a reality and with your help, maybe we can do something similar…


LEAPS – from Day One (in 2009) - has been about helping others. The group specifically supports those who are unwaged no matter why they are in that position – whether it be through physical disability, mental illness, retirement, redundancy… We don’t discriminate or hold judgement against anyone. With that in mind, LEAPS is always wanting to help more and more people, so it seemed logical to launch a project to do just that…


The idea of Lunch with LEAPS is to provide a packed lunch for those in need (namely people accessing food banks or those who have no fixed abode) in our local area. In this packed lunch there’ll also be a list of food and drinks that are within a specific amount of money according to the state benefit budgets a lot of unwaged people are entitled to. 


The hope with this project is that the lunch will not only provide sustenance in that moment, but that the list will then encourage the person to take some sense of independence in continuing to manage their diet according to their budgetary needs. We’d also like to take the opportunity to spread the word about LEAPS so that more people can access the support we offer.


To donate & for more information visit: https://bit.ly/2L4c9St


or click on the ‘Donate Now’ button to the left of the homepage!

Thursday, 23 April 2020

LEAPS TOP THREE TIPS FOR MANAGING YOUR MENTAL HEALTH THROUGH THE LOCKDOWN BY AIMEE WILSON, CHAIR OF LEAPS



Sadly, since the lockdown, LEAPS have been unable to facilitate group meetings every Friday, but we’ve been staying connected with the world through our Social Media Manager on our Twitter (which you can follow here) feed! We’d actually like to take this opportunity to say a huge thanks to our Social Media Manager for massively increasing our following and therefore allowing us to reach – and hopefully help – more people to manage their mental and physical health whilst unwaged.

The lockdown is having a huge impact on the mental health of a lot of people because the guidelines are so isolating and are leaving many people feeling lonely and afraid of these times that are filled with so much uncertainty. With this in mind, LEAPS would like to give you all three tips on how to cope if your mental health is struggling through the lockdown procedures and the coronavirus pandemic:



1.     Stay in contact with friends and family

Remaining connected with people is so essential at a time when ‘social distancing’ and ‘isolation’ are becoming the new buzz words! The advantages of today’s technology mean there are so many ways to keep in touch with friends and family; video chats, tweets, calls, texts, gifs… The amount of social media platforms and their functions is literally endless right now! For all the criticism that hashtags get, the lockdown has really illustrated just how powerful they are at bringing different people who have a common interest, together. Finding that there’s someone on the other side of the world who has the same opinion as you on a topic that matters a lot to you, can be so reassuring and comforting. The reminder that you aren’t alone in something is much-needed, especially at the moment!

Staying in touch with friends and family can also be helpful in finding inspiration from them on ways to be coping with the lockdown or activities you could be doing that are still in-keeping with lockdown protocol of course!


Tuesday, 25 February 2020

WHY DELEGATION IS SO IMPORTANT & A WELCOME TO OUR NEW SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER BY AIMEE, CHAIR OF LEAPS













Welcome to LEAPS’ second post of 2020! This time, our Chair; Aimee, will be talking exclusively to leapsonline.co.uk about the importance of one of her main responsibilities as chair; delegating tasks and duties.










The crazy speed of always needing more

But when I stop

And see you here

I remember who all this was for

From Now On – The Greatest Showman



Becoming Chair of Listening Ear & Positive Support was sort of an accident; during our 2019 Annual General Meeting I put myself forward for the position of Deputy Chair when our previous Chair suggested I just ‘take the reins’ completely. I remember saying, “you want be to be actual Chair?!” Now, almost a year later, I feel that the position has really taught me a lot about having a management/supervisory role, especially about delegation and the art of having the ability – or in my case, finding the ability – to entrust a task or responsibility with someone other than yourself.

Tuesday, 14 January 2020

LEAPS GOALS FOR 2020




Although we’re a little late on the bandwagon for the 2020 posts, we thought we would share with you all our goals and aims for this New Year!



1.     Improve our website

Due to many unforeseen circumstances, our website has failed to be maintained properly, but with a new year and a new start, that will no longer continue! The website’s actual design may not change dramatically but we really hope to maintain the site with news about the group and articles written by group members.



2.     Increase our membership

LEAPS have attended many events over the past year and are eager to spread the word of our existence in order to encourage more people to come along to our meetings. LEAPS provide so many opportunities of help and support that we’re so eager to help as many people as possible. If you’re interested in joining visit the ‘JOIN LEAPS’ page.


Saturday, 25 May 2019

LEAPS GO TO ALNMOUTH & ALNWICK | IN COLLABORATION WITH THE NATIONAL LOTTERY COMMUNITY FUND | AD















Thanks to funding from The National Lottery Community Fund, we were able to have a therapeutic trip to Alnmouth! When we arrived, however, we soon learnt that there wasn’t enough to do to take up the full day that we had planned so we took the fifteen-minute bus ride to Alnwick!






ANNOUNCEMENT: A CHANGE OF THE CHAIR




Little announcement to tell you all that our Chair has stepped down and our Advertising Manager; Aimee, was unanimously voted into the position by all members! 

She said:
“It’s an absolute honour to follow in Dave’s footsteps. I doubt I’ll bring what he did to the role but as the members say it might be nice to have a change/different kind of leadership. This group has become a second family for me and their support through my recent mental health crisis has been invaluable. I’m so proud to have secured the very well-deserved grant from The National Lottery Community Fund grant and I’m so pleased to see it be used in such an inspirational way! Finally, I’d like to thank all of our members for trusting me with such a huge responsibility and having faith in me to succeed at it.

Friday, 30 November 2018

UN REPORT ON POVERTY IN THE UK - BY CHAIRMAN, DAVID TAWS

14 million people, a fifth of the population, live in poverty. Four million of these are more than 50% below the poverty line, and 1.5 million are destitute – unable to afford basic essentials. 

The widely respected Institute for Fiscal Studies predicts a 7% rise in child poverty between 2015 and 2022, and various sources predict child poverty rates of as high as 40%. 

Philip Alston, UN rapporteur, discusses food banks; “I was struck by how much their mobilization resembled the sort of activity you might expect for a natural disaster or health epidemic.” 

Philip Alston: "Cuts to council budgets stand at 49.9%. Tories ignoring damage to the fabric of society. Libraries closed, youth centers closed down. Community roots are being "systematically broken" 

UN envoy Philip Alston says that "the women who experience domestic violence are tied in to abusive partner. Universal Credit does not show any understanding of violence towards women."

Philip Alston, the UN’s rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Child poverty levels are “not just a disgrace, but a social calamity and an economic disaster”.

The experience of the United Kingdom, especially since 2010, underscores the conclusion that poverty is a political choice. 

Austerity could easily have spared the poor, if the political will had existed to do so. Resources were available to the Treasury.

Friday, 28 September 2018

LEAPS DOES EDINBURGH | THERAPUTIC TRIP | FUNDED BY THE BIG LOTTERY FUND




As you may have seen in our previous post; LEAPS received funding from the BigLottery Fund for our project: ‘LEAPS Wellness Weeks.’

 

“It was a beautiful day and very exciting because it’s the first time in a long time that I’ve been away”

-       Group Member


HOW TO SUPPORT SOMEONE WITH A MENTAL HEALTH CONDITION | IN COLLABORATION WITH TIME TO CHANGE STORYCAMP 2020

by Aimee Wilson, Chair This year, LEAPS are supporting Time To Change’s 2020 Storycamp where the organization will be sending ...