Media volunteering

Raise awareness of mental health issues by sharing your experiences.

Media volunteers are extremely important to Mind's work. Journalists from a huge variety of media contact the media team on a daily basis, and are frequently looking to interview people with particular experiences of mental health problems. Being able to include a 'human interest' element can make or break a story in the media. Often, real life examples are what bring an issue to life, and allow the audience to understand and empathise with issues around mental health.

What's involved?

Over the years our media volunteers have helped with a whole raft of media work, from appearing on Channel 4 News speaking anonymously about employment, to an interview feature with The Independent on Sunday Magazine about experiences of depression, or featuring in a glossy magazine talking about how exercise can boost mental wellbeing.

Mind media volunteers can be interviewed anonymously, and we take confidentiality very seriously - we never send someone's details to a journalist without permission. If a volunteer does agree to an interview, Mind supports them both before and after the event.

I did a short interview for a radio station last year... I felt really proud and glad that I had been able to contribute to this

Current media opportunities

Crisis Care 

  • Nearest relatives. If you’re detained under the Mental Health Act, your ‘nearest relative’ has certain powers and rights while you are under section. You can’t choose your nearest relative – professionals work through a list in order, starting with your spouse, then your children, your parents and so on until someone is identified. If you’ve experienced difficulties with the nearest relative process while under the Mental Health Act please get in touch. We’re looking for people who may be willing to do interviews about their experience, and this could be anonymous if needs be, as we recognise the sensitivities around this issue.

  • Delayed discharge from hospital. We are looking for someone to potentially do a broadcast (TV and/or radio) interview about what it’s like to be kept in hospital longer than you should be. If in the last three years you have been in hospital because of your mental health, and clinicians felt you were well enough to leave but couldn’t discharge you because the right support wasn’t in place for you (such as housing provided by the local authority, for example) then we would like to hear from you, particularly if you were kept in hospital for a month or more longer than necessary.

If your experiences match any of the above and you would be happy to talk to journalists about them, please email Helen at media@mind.org.uk with a short paragraph outlining your experiences and we will contact you shortly.

Talking therapies 

  • Online therapy. An increasing number of therapy services across the UK are offering people the option of digital therapies, alongside the more traditional face-to-face therapy that is currently available to people seeking support for their mental health problems. This is most commonly available as part of the IAPT (Improving Access to Psychological Therapy) programme, for people experiencing mild to moderate depression and a range of anxiety disorders. We’d like to speak to anyone who:
  1. Has accessed digital therapies on the NHS and is happy to share their experience
  2. Has been offered digital therapy but didn’t choose to access it
  3. Wanted to access digital therapy but wasn’t able to.

If your experiences match any of the above and you would be happy to talk to journalists about them, please email Helen or Claire at media@mind.org.uk with a short paragraph outlining your experiences and we will contact you shortly.

Welfare

We’d like to speak to anyone who:

  • Has had a Work Capability Assessment (WCA) in the last 6 months.
  • Is currently in the Work-Related Activity Group of Employment and Support Allowance (ESA-WRAG) and would consider national TV/radio interviews.
  • Has had experience of appealing or is planning to appeal their Personal Independent Payment (PIP) decision to a tribunal.

If your experiences match any of the above and you would be happy to talk to journalists about them, please email Claire at media@mind.org.uk with a short paragraph outlining your experiences and we will contact you shortly.

Wales

We’d like to speak to anyone who is living in Wales who:

  • Has had difficulty accessing talking therapies, in English or Welsh.
  • Lives in a rural area (in Wales) and has experience of accessing (or trying to access) mental health services.
  • LGBTQ+ - Men or women identifying as gay, bisexual or queer between the ages of 18 - 28 who are currently experiencing anxiety, depression or eating disorders.
  • People who have stayed in hospital in the last two years as a result of a mental health crisis. We want to hear about your experiences.

If your experiences match any of the above and you would be happy to talk to journalists about them, please email Luke at media@mind.org.uk with a short paragraph outlining your experiences and we will contact you shortly.

Soaps and documentaries 

We are looking for very specific media volunteers to support some ‘behind the scenes’ work with soaps. If you are a young male with bipolar disorder or a woman in her 30’s or 40’s with OCD we would love to hear from you. Please email scriptadvice@mind.org.uk. 

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