The BMHF prides itself on being a grassroots organisation that aims to raise awareness of mental health and support people on a local level. Our current work involves organising local mental health awareness raising event/workshops and supporting people by organising local activities (social/educational) and one to one support.
BMHF Stakeholder Meetings
The BMHF holds monthly stakeholder meetings in the community. The meetings provide members & stakeholders the platform to network and share information (e.g. share good practices and keep pace with the current themes and trends in mental health); identify key concerns for the community and develop a voice to help shape local mental health services for the Bangladeshi community. The meetings are also primarily used as a platform to develop work priorities and to plan/review the annual planned activities.
Locality Based Awareness Days
The BMHF organises ‘mental health awareness days’ on a regular interval (monthly, bi-monthly, quarterly depending on funding), the awareness day aims to raise awareness of mental health, tackle stigma and to promote local mental health services to the Bangladeshi community and other hard to reach communities. The events are delivered in an interactive way which will be culturally and religiously sensitive. At these awareness events the community can learn more about mental health in a creative and interactive way (e.g. drama, theatre forum), be able to speak to mental health professionals and local service providers. They will also be able to hear personal stories from service users and carers and get the chance to express their views about mental health services to commissioners and service providers. More importantly the events aim to educate that our mental wellbeing needs to be taken seriously and that we need to prioritise it in the same parity as our physical wellbeing.
Workshops / Training
The BMHF is in the process of facilitating language appropriate mental wellbeing workshops / training sessions that will be undertaken in the various localities of Tower Hamlets. The workshops will focus on specific issues that are identified as basic intervention needs e.g. basic awareness of mental health, support for carers, how to access mental health services, imam training. In addition we aim to provide cultural and religious awareness training sessions for mental health professionals. The BMHF plan to undertake this work with the support of partner organisations such as local mosques, third sector community organisations and housing associations.
Consultation & Research
The BMHF undertakes consultation work (community research) to gather Bangladeshi (and other groups such as Somali) service users and carers feedback on key mental health issues and services, this will be used as evidence to prioritise BMHF work and more importantly be used to campaign and influence decision makers and providers.
We are also offering a ‘research and consultancy’ service to undertake relevant research or consultation work for commissioners and providers of mental health services.
Support Groups / Activities
The BMHF is in the process of setting up support groups (men’s and women’s) and set up culturally and religious appropriate group activities in the various parts of the borough where there are higher populations of Bangladeshi community or other minority communities. The type of groups and activities offered will be organised in conjunction with service user and carer needs.
In addition, we also plan to support existing service user led networks and groups and also facilitate a borough wide service user network.
Signposting / Advice
The BMHF is in the process of setting up signposting and advice sessions in the different localities of Tower Hamlets. People attending these sessions will be able to talk to someone about their issues and will be able to get referred to relevant services for professional support or advice.
Awareness Raising Campaign Film
The BMHF is seeking support to produce a short mental health awareness raising drama/film in Sylheti, we would like to show this short film on mainstream Bangladeshi TV stations on Sky and use it predominately at our events and workshops. If you are interested in supporting this work please get in touch with us.
Supporting The BMHF
The BMHF currently does not have receive any funding to carry out its core work we would therefore welcome organisations or individuals to support our work financially or by offering us free resources such as office space, meeting/events venues, printing.
We are also open to working in partnership with any organisation or individuals, if you have project ideas and would like to jointly apply for funding or would like to give your time to undertake the work voluntarily then please get in touch with Shamsur Choudhury (Development Manager) on 0771 607 8840 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.