Business helps spread mental health message during lockdown

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More than 70,000 Cumbrian homes are to receive vital advice during the lockdown after a mental health charity teamed up with a specialist delivery company.

Sean Walker and his team at Letterbox Smart have begun pounding the streets delivering a booklet which is a guide to mental health and wellbeing during Covid-19 for the charity Every Life Matters.

It will go to homes across north and west Cumbria.

The guide includes tips on managing stress, creating a healthy routine, working at home, supporting young people, recognising the signs when others are struggling, and where to find help with your mental health during the crisis.

It has been funded by the NHS and created by Every Life Matters, a mental health and suicide prevention charity based in Shap and run by a team of mental health professionals.  

Chris Wood, who is the charity’s development manager and was formerly CEO of Carlisle and Eden Mind, said: “What we know is that situations like this will leave people quite vulnerable in terms of their mental health and wellbeing because many of the coping mechanisms we take for granted have been taken away.

“The booklet is full of simple ideas, tools and tips on how to look after your mental health and how to look out for others too.”

Sean Walker, owner of Carlisle based Letterbox Smart, said: “This is information which is crucial for people to receive and I am very glad to be able to help.

“When the lockdown was announced I was prepared to shut the doors of my business, but I have been approached by a number of people needing to get essential information out to the community. 

“I just want to give something back and I feel lucky to be in a position to provide this assistance.

“And I am very grateful to my Post People for the great job they are doing, as none of this would be possible without their hard work and commitment.”

Sean, who is also an NHS volunteer in the fight against the pandemic, is doing the deliveries at a greatly reduced rate.

Letterbox Smart has also been asked to deliver 30,000 leaflets in the county for west Cumbria based mental health charity Together We Talk. 

Other jobs include delivering Covid-19 information leaflets in the Wetheral and Scotby areas, and in Lowry Hill, Carlisle, for local community and residents’ groups.

In addition, Letterbox Smart will deliver leaflets across Allerdale for Workington MP Mark Jenkinson, which include contact numbers for advice and support during the crisis.

Sean said: “For some people, especially the elderly who may not be on social media, leaflets through the door can be a crucial way for them to find out things like where they can get help with food or prescription deliveries.”

Sean launched Letterbox Smart in 2015 following a previous career as a database and software developer. The business is based at the Enterprise Centre in James Street, Carlisle, and normally delivers leaflets to more than 100,000 Cumbrian homes each month, mainly for local businesses ranging from banks to car dealerships.

Sean lives in Whitehaven with his wife Berenice, who works at Sellafield, and their sons Charlie, nine, and Luca, six.

Covid-19 Survival Tips from Every Life Matters:

*Reach out and connect regularly with friends and family in safe ways.

*If you are worried about someone, ask if they are ok and give them time and space to talk.

*Keep doing exercise if you can and keep your mind active.

*Create a routine, write a plan for your week and set yourself goals.

*Hold on to hope. Keep the big picture in mind. The crisis will end, and we will get through this.

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