The next Wellbeing Forum, on 4 April, is focussing on two very current and important topics for Reading, reducing loneliness and isolation and reducing deaths by suicide.
Cllr Graeme Hoskin, Chair of Reading’s Health and Wellbeing Board and Mental Health Champion will introduce the forum and talk about the importance of partnership working between the Council and voluntary sector to achieve aims of the Wellbeing Strategy.
Loneliness can affect affect people of all ages, in all circumstances, and all communities. Many voluntary organisations make an active contribution to reducing loneliness through group activities, befriending, lunch clubs, exercise classes, etc. etc.
Jo Hawthorne, Head of Wellbeing Commissioning and Improvement will give a short presentation on who in our communities is most at risk and developing a coordinated all-age approach to reach those most in need of support to connect or re-connect with their community
Sadly deaths by suicide increased by 22% across Berkshire in 2015, with 18 deaths in Reading. Suicide is the biggest single killer of men under 50. At the Forum, we want to look at how we can coordinate actions across agencies to build mental resilience in our communities and reduce these very stark numbers.
Sophie Walters, Branch Director of Reading Samaritans will give us some facts and figures and some of the underlying issues and tell us what Samaritans are offering locally
There will be plenty of time for discussions and networking during the morning.