Mentally Healthier Councils Network

Local councils are responsible for places and services critical to people’s safety, health and wellbeing – and are therefore one of the most important influencers of people’s mental health.

That’s why, for a decade, Centre for Mental Health has been supporting councils by hosting the Local Government Mental Health Challenge. Since 2013 we have worked with over 100 councillors as mental health champions to share good practice in improving social, housing, environmental, education, employment, leisure and other services that directly affect health and wellbeing. Mental Health Champions have taken inspiration and learning from the scheme and used it to boost mental health social work, substance misuse and other public health services; tighten alcohol off licensing; improve active travel and access to green space; and design initiatives to tackle poverty and discrimination. Collectively, these efforts have made a huge improvement to mental health across the country.

Now we’re delighted to announce new support to councils by creating a new Mentally Healthier Councils Network open to council officers as well as councillors. Funded by the Health Foundation, we’re building a vibrant learning community for elected members, council staff (including in public health, social care and more) and others in and around local government. We will be supporting local champions (elected or otherwise) to come together, learn, to influence and innovate. Building on the principles of the Mental Health Challenge, we’ll be developing a support offer that includes training, resources, and webinars.

Together we can build a Mentally Healthier Councils Network that delivers real improvements for communities.

Join the Mentally Healthier Councils Network

If you’re a councillor or council officer you can join the Network now.

Please sign up using your ‘gov.uk’ email address. Other email addresses won’t be accepted.

Launch events

To kick off the Network, we will be hosting a lunch time learning session in each of the nine regions.

These events will be an opportunity for people working on public health policy to come together, share ideas and shape the future of the Mentally Healthier Councils Network.

For each of the events our Policy and Public Affairs Lead, Ed Davie, will introduce the Network’s aims, followed by a fantastic group of speakers who will talk about their work in mental health and the importance of intervention at the local authority level.

We will announce the dates for each region as they are confirmed. Please see below for current confirmed dates and recordings of previous launches.

North East

Thursday 12 October 2023 | 1PM-2PM

North West

Thursday 19 December 2023 | 4PM-5PM

Yorkshire & Humber

Wednesday 10 January 2024 | 12PM-1PM

West Midlands

Wednesday 7th February 2024 | 1PM-2PM

South East

Monday 13th May 2024 | 1PM-2PM

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