Morecambe Bay residents can get mental health support at Big White Wall

Free mental health support is available to all Morecambe Bay residents thanks to a partnership between the local NHS and online mental health service, Big White Wall.

Monday, 13th July 2020, 3:45 pm
Dr Jim Hacking, local GP and Clinical Lead for Mental Health at Morecambe Bay Clinical Commissioning Group.

Poor mental health is something that many people will suffer with at some point in their life and naturally people have ups and downs. Big White Wall is an online community dedicated to sharing experiences and gives people an opportunity to open up to others who may be experiencing similar thoughts.

This digital mental health service can be accessed online and provides a safe space to talk, share and support others.

Dr Jim Hacking, local GP and Clinical Lead for Mental Health at Morecambe Bay Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “Big White Wall is a fantastic tool for people who are struggling with their mental health. The great thing is that people can log in anonymously and express their feelings to a community of people who understand what they are going through, which provides really valuable support at a time of need.

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“It can be accessed at any time of the day or night, which means that when people are feeling low they don’t have to wait to access help, they can log in and receive support straight away.

“And for those who struggle to put how they feel into words, they can ‘draw a brick’ to express the difficulties they are facing, which many people find quite therapeutic and relieving.”

Big White Wall is monitored by Wall Guides who are on hand 24/7 and will intervene if members seem particularly low and at risk and provide personal support on a one-to-one basis. Members also have the opportunity to take online tests to measure their anxiety or depression levels to set goals and track their progress.

Alongside the online community, there is a range of free online courses with health professionals to help manage things like sleep, health anxiety, stress and worry, along with many more.

Dr Hacking added: “Big White Wall gives you the ability manage your mental health at your own pace. It’s worth it, even if you only access one of the online courses.”

With thousands of people affected by Covid-19, it is understandable many may struggle with their mental health as a result.

Henry Jones, Chief Executive of Big White Wall, said: “We understand prolonged lockdown and social distancing measures put in place by the Government are taking a toll on everyone’s mental health, especially during the summer weather conditions.

"At Big White Wall we have seen activity and registrations across the service more than double, with 60 per cent of conversations over the past month discussing COVID-19. In response to the pandemic, we have expanded our clinical and on-duty teams to effectively moderate increased activity across our community and manage risk. We have also added additional relevant content and signposting across the service.

“If any Morecambe Bay resident is experiencing heightened feelings of isolation, loneliness, stress or worry, I would encourage them to use Big White Wall for free to keep connected and receive support from our community. We can all help each other through these uncertain times.”

It’s available for free to anyone over 16 living in Morecambe Bay through a quick registration process using a postcode, simply visit: www.bigwhitewall.com.