Mental health social enterprise appoints ‘culture strategist’ as chair

‘Cultural Strategist’ Adah Parris has been appointed as chair of the mental health social enterprise Mental Health First Aid England (MHFA).

She joins the community interest company’s non-executive board, working alongside chief executive Simon Blake.

Parris was recently named one of the most influential women in UK tech and specialises in advising leaders and cultural strategy.

She joins as the social enterprise is looking to increase its work training mental health first aiders amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I’m excited to be joining MHFA England at this moment in history, where the focus on people’s mental health and wellbeing has never been sharper,” said Parris.

“As Chair I will seek to create change so mental health is properly prioritised in society. Drawing on my lived experiences I will bring my whole self to the role I want us to lead and champion the discussion about mental health, systemic inequalities and the intersectionality of race, gender, age and mental health.”

“As we work determinedly for progress in workplaces and wider communities, I want to work and learn with the whole MHFA England community to ensure this brilliant social enterprise achieves its mission of training one in ten of the adult population in mental health awareness and skills. The time for change is now, and I want to play my part in creating the mental health futures that we all want, need and desire.”

Blake added: “Adah’s experience of working across a wide range of organisations and communities will be a huge asset to MHFA England and her energy for achieving cultural change is exactly what we need right now.

“I am looking forward to working with Adah as we develop our strategy to be relevant in a post pandemic world, keeping in sharp focus our goal to create a society where there is an unshakable belief that we can all talk freely about mental health and seek support when we need it.”

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