Every Little Thing Festival champions mental health support and signposting

Every Little Thing organisers group photo

The Every Little Thing Festival marked Suicide Prevention Day by supporting wellness and providing a space to learn more about mental health and suicide prevention.

It was created by Sinead Gibson, who was worked to support those with mental health issues following the loss of her daughter Diva’s life to suicide in May 2020.

The day saw keynote speeches from Royal Society of Arts fellow and TED speaker Nick Hammond, presenter Ayo Sokale, and MedYoga Therapy founder Davinder Ojalla, as well as Dr Carly Jones MBE, Hari Sewell, music star Danyl Johnson, London-based rapper Shocka, and social housing activist and Visionary Arts Community Person of the Year, Kwajo Tweneboa.

Organiser Sinead Gibson said: “Mental health care needs to be accessible for all, and the pathways need to be clear for those accessing services and their loved ones.

“There were organisations that could have supported Diva, myself and those close but we didn’t know about them and how they could help.”

She explained: “When Diva died, everyone asked what had happened, we all looked for the why. The truth is, there is usually many smaller things that would have led up to the suicidal feelings. Equally, there are many smaller things that can buffer us and offer us protection.

“Kindness, hope and connection are so important.

“Those of us supporting Diva each held part of a jigsaw and had someone been putting those pieces together perhaps she would still be here.”

She also explained how having a late diagnosis also impacted the support available to Diva.

“There needs to be more flexible, individual care, meeting the needs of those for whom traditional services don’t fit.

“By bringing the NHS, charities and community organisations together, we can open discussions and work more effectively together and provide clearer signposting.”

The Visionary Arts Foundation were proud supporters of this event.