Ashleigh Clarke

To celebrate it being a decade of raising mental health awareness and stamping out stigma, the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) hosted a 1 in 4 Film Festival to commemorate the anticipated anniversary.
This particular event screened a variety of different films that highlighted different types of mental health followed by an audience discussion at the end. The film festival isn’t without a purpose as it educates, enlightens and engages our bodies, hearts and minds.
Overall, the festival was organised by UCLan’s Comensus and Service Users and Careers Advisory Group with help from the local community. Many of the staff, students and members of the public attended the event on the opening night which marked World Mental Health Day.
For the last 8 years, Phyllis Prior-Egerton has been on the 1 in 4 Film Festival organising committee and she had this to say, “We’re really excited to be celebrating a decade of the event which has grown in popularity each year. With one in four people suffering from mental health issues, is it something that affects us all in one way or another.”

Susan Blowers, another fellow committee member also added, “Through the festival we want to stamp out stigma and prompt discussion and films provide a good platform to do this. People often tell us they feel like they can be more open and ask questions at the event, which can only be a good thing and breaks down barriers.”

“UCLan is proud to support the 1 in 4 Film Festival”, says Consensus Co-Ordinator and UCLan Community Engagement Ambassador – Lisa Malihi-Shoja, “we can see how much progress it’s made over the last decade in bringing people together to talk openly about mental health”.

She also goes onto add that the festival is the only service user and carer led film festival in the UK. She states that, “The Comensus and Service Users and Carers Advisory Group (SUCAG) does a great job of working with local community groups to organise the event and create the opportunity for open discussion about what is often a taboo subject”.

The Film Festival was a great way make sure every individual felt safe, secure and included.The festival is held each year to help mental help be talked about. How did you find the film festival this year, did it achieve it’s main goal?

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