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Mary Frances Trust

On Tuesday 7th December 2020 we opened the airwaves to The Wellbeing Hour, created and recorded by the Mary Frances Trust (MFT), our local mental health and emotional wellbeing charity for adults in Surrey. The Wellbeing Hour is a monthly radio programme featuring MFT clients, staff and facilitators as well as guests around thought-provoking discussions about mental health and emotional wellbeing, from the perspective of people with lived experience.

The new monthly show covered so many topics and gave clear and helpful advice to listeners.

Next show – Monday 3rd May 2021


Show 1

The show touched on how the charity operates and who can access their services whilst running through some of their popular activities including their coffee mornings, meditation, creative writing and Walk for Health. You are invited to view their calendar of events online: www.maryfrancestrust.org.uk/calendar

The programme continued by telling us about Safe Havens that provide out of hours help and support to people and their carers who are experiencing a mental health crisis or emotional distress, and the charity’s new campaign aimed at engaging Surrey’s men with the importance of putting their mental wellbeing first, Men’s Minds Matter.

There were interviews with Lindon who relocated to better support his mental health, Peter a musician and author who spoke about managing emotions, and arts and crafts facilitator Taryn who ran through some ways to get creative. A interesting idea to turn your daily journal into a work of art for your eyes by using colours you like, scribbling shapes and pictures and adding photos and mementoes (like a scrapbook) is an easy way of accessing your creative side.

The team did an amazing job for their first show and are excited to producing next month’s edition focused on knowing yourself. Listen to the very first The Wellbeing Hour here:


Show 2

Meditation facilitator Litsa presented the show for the first show of the new year and introduced the theme of: “New Year, Know You” (a new take of the old adage “New Year, New You”) and the many ways in which you can get to know yourself better this coming year by trying out new things!

The show will be speaking to some of our instructors, Anna from Happy Head Yoga and Coaching and Jayne from Jayne’s Zumba & Fitness about the benefits of physical activity, from supporting nervous systems to healthy hearts.

We’ll also hear a conversation between craft expert Taryn and MFT clients Corinne and Paula on trying art even when you don’t think you’re crafty and unearthing your inner creativity.

You’ll also be treated to a beautiful song played on the treble recorder by MFT client Rebecca as well as a meditation and sound healing session from Litsa & Alysson from Ayiayoga (www.ayiayoga.com).


Show 3

The show featured a section for Time to Talk Day (4 February 2021) and the show as a whole focused on the “power of words” and how words can impact our mental health in a positive or negative way.

The show starts by chatting to Michele, the Mary Frances Trust Creative Writing tutor, on why writing can help to transform our emotions as well as how we can change our internal language and the way we talk to ourselves.
Michele also sets up an easy creative writing task to get you to try poetry writing yourself using your voice and choice of words (or made up words!).

Suzie from the Women’s Group was then interviewed about the power of positive affirmations and how they can reframe your thoughts and even change your day.

For the second part of the show, the focus was on how to support young people to mark Children’s Mental Health Week (1-7 Feb 2021). You will hear from the User Voice and Participation Team on where to seek help if a young person is looking for some support in these current times.

A 5-min breathing space with Litsa to reflect and pause before finally arts facilitator Taryn talks to Lee-Anne Eastwood, Educational Psychologist on what advice we can give parents/carers on how they can emotionally support their children during lockdown and home-schooling as well as how to look after their own mental health.


Show 4

Another packed show from the team at Mary Frances Trust!

To follow up on the theme of supporting parents/carers in lockdown, YOUR specific questions were asked to Kathryn Harriss, a BACP Accredited counsellor, who shared advice on supporting your children with their mental health whilst also looking after your own.

For World Book Day (4 March), members of the Mary Frances Trust Book Club reviewed ‘Anne of the Green Gables’ and explained why this particular book really helped them through the latest lockdown.

To mark World Bipolar Day (30 March) and as part of the Men’s Minds Matter campaign to encourage men to open up about mental health, a panel discussion was held with Laurence and Chris, two male clients of MFT who shared their experience of being bipolar and what has helped them to manage the condition.

Finally, gorgeous acrostic poems submitted by listeners in response to Michele’s creative writing assignment in our February show were read out on air!


Show 5

On the agenda this month the team spoke with Enya, Mary Frances Trust’s Peer Support Worker about the recent launch of SUN, the new service for people with complex emotions often associated with personality disorder MFT deliver in partnership with Community Connections Surrey and SABP.

Listen to Elena’s story, about how receiving a diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder helped her to understand herself better and started her passion for mental health activism. Elena works for Catalyst, is a musician and a SUN member – she shares her first impressions of the new service.

To mark Stress Awareness Month Angie Muscio, a wellbeing facilitator, was asked the question what is stress and when to tell when it’s starting to affect our lives. This is followed with a discussion between Angie and a few clients from MFT about how they manage their stress and what techniques they have learnt with Angie that has helped them to feel calm.

The show closed with a fun creative activity with Taryn and Litsa which you can try at home too!