Mental health is still a taboo issue in the UK today. Depression and other conditions are still rarely discussed outside GP / specialist surgeries, although they affect 1 in 4 of us in the UK. Suicide is the leading cause of men under 50, yet most of us are reluctant to open up about this. Men's support group Andy's Man Club is fighting to change that, and through encouraging talking, is helping to save lives.
After spreading across Yorkshire and into Oldham over the last few years, Andy's Man Club now opens in the heart of Manchester City Centre tonight.
At 7pm the first Manchester group will begin their weekly sessions in Federation House. You can find it down the side of the Printworks, near the Pilcrow. I'll be there, along with a handful of people from the Oldham group. There'll be plenty of newcomers too, so we're expecting mix of experienced and fresh attendees. If you're male, over the age of 18 and feel it would help, you'll be welcomed to drop in tonight.
The group runs on a simple structure nationwide, so no matter what group you attend, the same questions and time structure will apply. Some of the questions change each week, but round 1: 'how's your week been?' and round 3: 'do you have anything to get off your chest' will remain the same every week.
Sunday daytime: If you're quick, you might get a place on a game of Exit the Room, featuring 'games where you will develop and explore new ways of using your brain, explore hidden capabilities, and meet new challenges as they arise during our real-life escape games.' Mental health support group Talk About It Mate has organised the event, and has been prepaid through a voucher. There's one more space. We're meeting at 11am in Piccadilly Gardens.