People in rural Scotland:
- experience depression, suicidal thoughts and feelings, self-harming behaviour and anxiety disorder - no matter what their age, gender or location
- their isolation is made worse by remoteness, stigma and fear.
What needs to change:
- people want to connect before their mental health crisis occurs - locally in "low-level", non-clinical settings
- shorter waiting times and mobile outreach to all parts of Scotland are crucial to prevention.
The Forum is a strong network of rural people and stakeholders driving change to:
- enable rural people to be open about their mental health
- have a solid evidence base for what works to improve people's lives
- create a programme to influence policy-makers to channel resources in ways that bring positive change through a network of rural organisations across Scotland
scottish government's MENTAL HEALTH STRATEGY 2017-2027:
- ACTION 12: Support the further development of the National Rural Mental Health Forum to reflect the unique challenges presented by rural isolation.
- "The challenge presented by isolation is keenly felt by many in our rural communities.
- The National Rural Mental Health Forum has been established to help people in rural areas maintain good mental health and wellbeing.
- This Forum will help develop connections between communities across rural Scotland, so that isolated people can receive support when and where they need it."