Government funding cuts lead to closure of charity-run mental health campaign

The charity run mental health campaign Time To Change is to close after losing its government funding.

The campaign was launched 15 years ago by the mental health charities Rethink Mental Illness and Mind to challenge stigma around mental health.

But this week it has announced the government have ended its long-term funding, which has forced the campaign to close at the end of March.

The campaign’s director Jo Loughran said: “We had hoped to continue to fight for equity and end discrimination, working with these communities and others whose lives continue to be severely impacted. Sadly, we will not be able to carry out this vital work but will spend the coming months making sure that our ambition is driven forward within the work of Mind and Rethink Mental Illness.”

She said the removal of long term funding by the government comes amid rising rates of mental health problems amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We know that in times of financial hardship, attitudes towards people with mental health problems tend to deteriorate, so there is a real threat that the improvements we’ve achieved will slide backwards. Right now, the true impact of the pandemic on our mental health is still unknown," added Loughran.

“What we do know is that there are difficult and uncertain times ahead and it has never been more important to look after ourselves and our friends and family: to talk, to listen and to check-in. That is why we will be working with individuals, organisations and communities right up until the last moment of our current funding and encouraging them to continue campaigning into the future.”

The campaign said that over the coming months it will embed its work to tackle discrimination into the work of Mind and Rethink Mental Illness.

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