Lanarkshire organisers and partners launch the eighth
Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival in the Alona Hotel in
Strathclyde Country Park.
The eighth Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival was
recently launched with Power as its main theme.
It was chosen by the organisers as there is a general acceptance
that art has the power to create change.
Be it song, theatre, film or the written word, art can inspire
individuals to be all they can be as well as encapsulate social
movement and change.
With one of the festival's main drivers being to tackle the
stigma associated with mental ill health and to promote recovery,
this year's theme is an ideal message to build the event
Susan McMorrin, senior health promotion officer for NHS
Lanarkshire, is coordinating the festival in Lanarkshire.
She said: "Despite the fact that most people will have some
personal experience of mental ill health, there is still a great
deal of stigma, discrimination and inequality experienced by people
both young and old who have had or have mental health care
"Those with a mental health issue can often feel disempowered as
a result of it and participating in the arts can bring a sense of
"We want to remind people that being, involved, creative,
connected and learning new things are very important to our mental
health and therefore the festival is for all of us."
The festival also aims to promote positive attitudes towards
mental health and mental illness and remind people to value and
look after theirs and others mental health.
Isobel McCarthy, South Lanarkshire's Choose Life mental health
and wellbeing development officer, added: "The festival is a
fantastic opportunity for people to showcase their talents and
demonstrate how the experiences of participating in arts and
cultural activities can have beneficial effects on their sense of
"South Lanarkshire has been committed to supporting this
development over many years and this year's festival has an
outstanding line up of events engaging with people from all age
groups and backgrounds."
The range of events in Lanarkshire includes challenging film and
theatre, uplifting music, hard-hitting dance, thought-provoking
photography and reflective poetry.
Bobby Miller, manager for younger adults for North Lanarkshire
Council said: "The festival continues to be a major opportunity to
deliver positive messages regarding issues of mental health and
this year's theme of 'power' is one that we can all relate to both
in our personal and professional lives. "
The eighth Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival runs
from 1 to 19 October. For a full list of the events taking place in
Lanarkshire and across Scotland, visit: http://www.mhfestival.com/