A life coach from Lancaster has embarked on a mission to challenge the stigma surrounding men's mental health by launching a community support group.
According to recent data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), in 2021 the UK recorded 5,219 suicides, with a male suicide rate of 15.8 per 100,000, in men under 40-years-old.
Now, a Lancaster resident is making a significant contribution to addressing this issue by establishing a community-based mental health group specifically designed to support local men.
The newly formed group, L.A.D.S - Listening and Destroying Stigma - aims to provide support and guidance to men who may otherwise be hesitant to address their mental health concerns.
Jake Davidson, life coach and group founder, says he has an ambitious vision for the group, aiming to have a meaningful impact on the lives of local men by actively changing mindsets and promoting positive change.
The group advocates for adopting healthier lifestyles, emphasising dietary improvements and physical fitness, with the aim of encouraging increased social engagement and participation in activities that challenge individuals to step out of their comfort zones.
"The group's mission encompasses providing structure, stability, and employment opportunities for those who may be lacking direction, offering a renewed sense of purpose,’’ Jake told Beyond Radio.
‘’This holistic approach acknowledges that isolation can contribute to depression, and the group seeks to broaden horizons beyond the confines of routine, often alcohol-dependent social interactions.
"Life is often compared to riding a bicycle, we all possess potential, but sometimes, we stumble when facing a rough patch.
The group gathers fortnightly, with the next session scheduled for Tuesday November 21 at 7:30pm, to be held on the upper floor of The Borough in Lancaster.
‘’To navigate life successfully, we must keep pedalling forward to the best of our abilities, no matter how challenging it may be,’’ adds Jake.
‘’Our group aims to act as stabilizers on that bicycle, preventing men from falling and allowing them to continue their life journey."
"Our goal is to provide a safe and confidential space for men to share their experiences and challenges, while also providing access to valuable mental health and well-being resources.
‘’Our ultimate aspiration is to inspire and empower individuals to adopt a positive mindset, with success measured by participants leaving the sessions feeling better than when they arrived.''