Charity’s video aims to bring sunshine to Shetland community amid the coronavirus gloom

Mental health charity Mind Your Head has released a video to help bring a “little bit of sunshine” into people’s lives.

The short film which launched was inspired by the artwork of a seven-year-old boy.

In September last year, Mind Your Head and NHS Health Improvement ran an art competition for Suicide Prevention Week. One of the winners was young James Aitken, who sent in a drawing showing a person being someone else’s “sunshine”.

Mind Your Head has taken that message and created a video featuring Shetlanders being with someone who “feels like sunshine to them”. Its launch was timed to coincide with Mental Health Awareness Week (18th to 24th May) which has the theme of Kindness Matters set by the Mental Health Foundation.

Charity Johnson of Mind Your Head said it was the perfect opportunity to tie in the message of James’s art with the message for the week.

She said: “We asked people in Shetland to film themselves with loved ones and friends (or send memories of them captured in film), showing how they are staying connected with their ‘sunshine’ during lockdown.

“The credits section of the heart-warming video includes a track by Shetland’s very own virtual conductor, Eamonn Watt, made especially for the occasion.

“We’ve grateful for everyone who sent in bits and pieces of their heart for all the world to see. Working on this video and speaking to everyone involved has certainly given me a little bit of sunshine and a little bit of hope that everything will be all right – if I just hang in there for now.

“If at least one person feels the same way, then this whole campaign has done its job. I’m grateful to I have a team at work who pulls together during times like this and cheers me on.”

Claire Morris, from NHS health improvement, said the “Kindness Matters” theme tied in well with the coronavirus situation.

She said: “At this time of uncertainty the communities have pulled together and shown kindness more than ever. Families are making an extra effort to stay connected and neighbours are going above and beyond to look out for one another.

“The theme is perfect and is a chance to celebrate all the wonderful things people have been doing and sprinkle a little more kindness around.

“Throughout the week we’re going to be sharing activities around kindness, tips to look after your mental health and links to mental health help line numbers.”

People can find both Mind Your Head and Healthy Shetland on social media platforms.

The video was released simultaneously on Tuesday 19th May at 5pm UK time on the Mind Your Head Facebook, IGTV, and YouTube pages.

Meanwhile, Mind Your Head has been awarded £1,000 from Voluntary Action Shetland which are making payments on behalf of the Supporting Communities Fund for Lerwick.

The money will be used to fund the charity’s Feel Good Bags.

Service manager Anouska Civico said “I think now more than ever people need to stop and take time out for themselves.

“We are all under so much pressure right now and it is too easy to get caught up in the mania that surrounds the current situation.

“Hopefully these bags will provide some much needed resources and items that will allow individuals to indulge in some self-care.”


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