Living with mental health problems can be life changing and can affect anyone, at any time.
Charity Heads On – the official partner of Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust – supports people with mental health problems, funding special projects, pioneering research and the transformation of mental health hospitals into more comfortable and welcoming environments.
The charity is on a mission to make March 11 the happiest day in Sussex – by getting people to use the ‘power of a smile’.
Rachael Duke, head of the charity, said: “We are asking everyone across Sussex to come together on Friday, March 11, and show their support for people with mental health problems, something one in four of us experience but often don’t talk about.
“What better way to show your support than by bringing out your silly side for a good cause?
“All you need to do is dress up, show us a smile, and make a donation that will help make life smiles better for the people we look after at Sussex Partnership.
“Our fundraising pack makes taking part really easy, giving you everything you need to get started.”
Projects supported by Head’s On include supporting Sussex Recovery College which offers courses about mental health and recovery and buying toys and games for looked after children.
A spokeswoman for Heads On said the toys help put children at ease, and increase the trust between children and staff which helps them to build stronger relationships.
The funds have also contributed to a sensory room for people living with dementia, an outing to London for people with severe and chronic mental health problems, activities for children and young people and art projects at the Hellingly Centre which provides services for mentally ill offenders.
Anisa Ahmed, fundraising Officer at Heads On said: “The Big Grin is your chance to show your support for people with mental health problems and have some fun while raising money for the people we care for who are having a tough time.
“Every penny you fundraise will make a real difference to our patients and families by funding special projects that complement the fantastic NHS care our staff provide.”
The charity has suggested supporting The Big Grin by wearing fancy dress, a Head’s On mask, or even a sticker.
A spokeswoman for the charity added: “You could even boost your fundraising by holding a bake sale, joke challenge or raffle, sit in a tin of baked beans, hold a comedy night – anything that makes you grin!”
Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust provides NHS mental health services throughout Sussex, including Langley Green and Meadowfield Hospital, Amberstone and the Hellingly Centre.
The trust offers treatment for people with conditions such as psychosis, depression, anxiety, dementia, personality disorder and learning disabilities.
To sign up for The Big Grin email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Anisa Ahmed on 07469 351456.
To donate text GRIN16 followed by the amount you want to donate to 70070. To find out more or donate online visit www.headsoncharity.org/donate or send a cheque to Heads On, Swandean, Arundel Road, Worthing, BN13 3EP.