‘Mental health cafes’ launched in the UK
Major UK retailer, Marks and Spencer, has announced it will be opening a line of cafes offering its stressed customers a place to talk through their issues with others.
The ‘Frazzled Cafes’ will operate out of eleven Marks and Spencer department stores across the UK and will host fortnightly ‘talk-in’ sessions where customers can meet others for a chat.
Marks and Spencer has launched the cafes with UK mental health awareness campaigner, Ruby Wax, who said it was special to get a company like Marks and Spencer on-board with mental health initiatives.
“We live in a time where to have a life crammed to the hilt is considered a success story,” Wax said.
“But with all this pressure, so many of us have nowhere to go to meet and talk about it. Frazzled Cafe is about people coming together to share their stories, calmly sitting together, stating their case and feeling validated as a result,” she stated.
Will Australia follow?
Will a similar café be developed for Australia?
No-one has mentioned the idea here, but one of Australia’s leading advocacy organisations for improved mental health is Beyond Blue which recently estimated that approximately 45 per cent of the Australian population will experience a mental health condition in their lifetime.
Beyond Blue has also reported that in any one year, approximately one million Australian adults have depression and over two million have anxiety.
Australians needing help today can call a number of hotline numbers including Lifeline on 13 11 14, Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800, MensLine Australia on 1300 789 978 and Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.