Vanessa Browning.

Support is just a phone call away

A group that looks to help those suffering with their mental health in Spalding has launched a free phone service.

Community Mind Matters has been helping people in the community for a number of years and hold regular meetings to get some of the people it helps to integrate with each other and build up confidence.

With the current COVID-19 outbreak though, those group meetings have had to stop.

The group’s organiser Vanessa Browning (pictured) though felt those people and others in the community may need even more help amid the current government lockdown guidelines particularly with many self-isolating.

So she and the group’s supporter, Coun Jack McLean have set up the helpline that anybody in Spalding can call if they’re struggling with mental health issues.

The number is 01775 729241.

Anyone ringing the number is asked to leave a voice message and a support worker will ring them back for a chat.

Vanessa said: “A lot of people are understandably a bit anxious at the moment and for those in my group that were already struggling with that or depression, it doesn’t just go away.

“A lot of the people from my groups are vulnerable, so it’s about supporting those.

“But we’re here also for anybody who may be struggling.

“We can also act as the intermediary and pass you on to other groups such as Crisis.

“And we’re working with the Spalding COVID-19 Kindness Team to help provide supports.

“We’re all working as a team.”

Vanessa says that at the minute she’s getting two or three calls a day from people.

And she’s trying to help as many as possible so they don’t feel too lonely.

“I’ve been going to some of the group members’ doors and just leaving a bit of cake for them,” she said.

“I just want them to know they’re not alone even though many don’t have any family they’re living with.

“Just talking can be a kind of therapy.

“Even those that are really struggling can benefit from a phone call.”

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