Protecting the human rights of people who are experiencing mental health problems is the priority of a new funding initiative launched today.
See Me, the national programme to end mental health discrimination, has £230,000 available to projects which can change the way people behave towards those with mental health problems.
The programme is looking for projects in the Western Isles which can tackle stigma in workplaces, in health and social care, with children and young people, in minority groups and in the general public.
This year’s Community Innovation Fund is the largest amount to ever be made available to fund these types of projects in Scotland.
In previous years See Me has funded projects ranging from; changing the way mental health is viewed in the justice system, to tackling discrimination towards students at university and passengers on buses, to creating public art and drama exhibitions.
In the last round of funding Skye and Lochalsh Citizens Advice Bureau were given a grant to tackle the inequality faced by people with mental health problems living in isolated rural areas.
The funding is divided in to two separate streams. Up to £4000 is available for six month projects which engage local communities and help stop discriminatory behaviour.
There is also up to £20,000 available to groups for projects which can tackle mental health discrimination over the course of a year. These can be based in one geographical area, but making a wider change, or they can be Scotland wide projects which can tackle stigma in areas such as workplaces, or in health and social care.
For the first time this year See Me also has £2000 available to help people to create networks and start the process of developing and delivering projects.
Judith Robertson, See Me programme director, said: “We are creating a movement of people, groups and organisations all over Scotland who care about injustice and equal rights in society.
“The Community Innovation Fund is vital in bringing so many amazing ideas to life and allows us to support real changes in communities in the Western Isles.
“However this funding will not just allow people to make changes in their area, but through our networks will allow people to share ideas, so they can inspire each other to make real changes all over the country.
“What is great about these projects is that they are led by people with lived experience of mental health problems, who are at the front of the drive for change.”
More information and application packs can be found on our website, at www.seemescotland.org
Applications must be submitted to See Me by May 31st.