Mental Wealth Festival 2018
“I support the Mental Wealth Festival because there is still a stigma around mental health. People don’t have anywhere to go – to get help, support and share knowledge – and this is exactly the point of the festival. It’s the Glastonbury of mental health.” – Jonny Benjamin MBE, award-winning mental health campaigner and contributor in 2017 and 2018.
The 2018 Mental Wealth Festival featured over 100 talks, debates and workshops by more than 100 contributors, from politicians to health sector innovators, mental health campaigners to business leaders, to famous art institutions and leading charities. We provided access across the community sharing knowledge and good practice and focused on mental health and wellbeing. We celebrated many aspects of life including personal development, home, work and the community that all contribute to people's mental wellbeing.
Day one (10 September) took place at City Lit and the main theme for the day was mental health and the workplace. The Festival continued in the evening at Houses of Parliament for a debate and discussion on suicide prevention coinciding with World National Suicide Day.
The second day (11 September) took place at The National Gallery and focused on mental health at home and within communities. There was an emphasis on connecting the Gallery’s spaces and collection with events that inspire a sense of purpose and positive social empathy. The festival concluded with a conversation between Grayson Perry CBE and City Lit Principal Mark Malcomson at The National Gallery. Grayson received his Fellowship from his former City Lit tutor Kate Wickham.
There was an impressive line-up contributors and speakers including artist Grayson Perry CBE, journalist Bryony Gordon, mental health campaigner Jonny Benjamin MBE, Dr Kathryn Mannix, mental health professional Mandy Stevens, mental health campaigner Geoff McDonald and many others…
Baroness Sheila Hollins, Chair and Founder of Beyond Words said: "Our festival presents a shared vision of a world where everyone can understand, talk about and support each other’s mental health and wellbeing."
Mark Malcomson, Principal at City Lit said: "The idea of mental wealth catches everyone’s imagination. It needs no explanation, and is something we all want more of, regardless of our social circumstances, personal experience or professional interest."
The Mental Wealth Festival 2018
In Conversation with Grayson Perry at The National Gallery
Our Speakers 2018
City Lit Fellow Baroness Hollins is the founder, editor and lead author of the Books Beyond Words series and Chairs the Board of Beyond Words, a not for profit Community Interest Company. She is Emeritus Professor of the Psychiatry of Disability at St George’s, University of London, and sits in the House of Lords as a crossbench peer.
Bryony Gordon is one of The Telegraph’s best loved journalists, columnist and features writer. She has been writing for The Telegraph for a number of years and also freelances for various other publications including Grazia Magazine.
Chris is a leading exponent on global mental health practice, a social entrepreneur, and a mentor. Chris is the founder of BasicNeeds, co-founder of citiesRISE and the Chair of Spring Impact, a Global Director of Leaders Quest and the Chair of Carers Worldwide.
Dr Kathryn Mannix
Dr Kathryn Mannix worked as a palliative physician for 30 years in hospices, hospitals and visiting patients in their own homes. Her book, 'With the End in Mind,' describes normal human dying and the many lessons she learned over her career in medicine.
Dr Petra Simic
Dr Petra Simic is the interim Medical Director for Bupa Health Clinics. Since May 2018 she has been the Interim Medical Director for Bupa Health Clinics. Before joining Bupa, Petra was a GP partner in an NHS practice in Hertfordshire for 9 years.
Eva Provedel is a Joy Coach, Laughter Yoga Teacher & Ambassador, Expression-Enabler and Personal Impact Trainer based in London. Eva helps professionals connect with their source of happiness and express it in their work and lifestyle.
Geoff is Co-Founder of a network called ‘Minds@Work’ and a Trustee of ‘Family Links’, a Charity educating parents and teachers to develop emotionally-healthy children and young adults. He has been asked to join the Prince’s Trust Youth Opportunity Taskforce with the purpose of creating change that will unlock the potential in the UK’s youth.
City Lit Fellow Grayson Perry CBE, is an award-winning artist who works in a variety of media, but is best known for his ceramic works. In 2003, Grayson became famous as the first ceramic artist to win the Turner Prize. Alongside his art, Grayson has written and presented documentaries including an hour-long documentary for Channel 4 entitled Why Men Wear Frocks.
Helen Hayes is Labour MP for Dulwich and West Norwood, first elected in 2015 and re-elected in 2017 with an increased majority. Helen takes a strong interest in mental health and autism, and has led a back bench business debate on young people's mental health, and co-sponsored a recent debate on the future of Transforming Care.
Tommy Danquah is a blogger and father of two who has been through life changing depression. This affected him and his young family so much that he had no choice but to make radical changes in an attempt to get his life back on track. He became a Mental Health First Aider and is keen to help others who are also struggling in the best way he can, by talking openly about his experiences on the ManUp! Mens Mental Health Podcast alongside his co-host Andy Richardson.
James is the Executive Director for Scotland at Samaritans. James’ role is to lead on work to prevent suicide through national relationships, partnerships and through work with national and local Government. He has worked in the sector for the past 20 years for charities such as Oxfam, Cancer Research UK, Shelter and Breast Cancer Now.
Joanna was appointed the Bank of England’s Chief Operating Officer in July 2017 and previously was the Executive Director of Human Resources. Joanna is a Fellow of the CIPD; an Independent Director, Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment; a Trustee of Blind in Business; and a School Governor.
Johnny serves on both the House of Commons Defence and Health Select Committees. He was reelected in 2017 after only two years in the job with an almost five-fold increase in his majority. Johnny speaks regularly in the House of Commons with a focus on defence, veterans, mental health and transport issues.
Jonny Benjamin is an award-winning mental health campaigner, film producer, public speaker, writer and vlogger. Jonny spent 2017 writing the first of 2 books on mental health entitled The Stranger On A Bridge which was published by Pan Macmillan in May 2018.
Laura Hearn is the founder of the globally recognised online platform, 'Jiggsy' which uses it's unique creative tool 'The Jiggsaw' to connect people affected by an eating disorder and mental ill health.
Laura Willis is the founder of Shine Offline, a consultancy that helps people and businesses understand the potentially negative impact our 24/7 culture could be having on their wellbeing, work life balance, productivity, creativity and relationships.
Mandy Stevens is a qualified nurse & has worked in mental health services for 30 years. For the first 15 years Mandy worked in a range of clinical positions mostly in the Mental Health Acute Care pathway, including inpatient services, Crisis Teams & Community Mental Health Teams.
Rachel Kelly is a writer and mental health campaigner. Rachel speaks publicly about her experience of depression and recovery. She is an official ambassador for SANE, Rethink Mental Illness, Young Minds and The Counselling Foundation. Rachel has written four books.
Shammi completed a brain training program when a doctor referred him to the BrainRx concept after being diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADHD & Depression. After completing the program, Shammi, as well as family and friends, could see the difference brain training made to his life.
Stu Baker, Ex Royal Navy, now a personal trainer, author and a mental health advocate. He has lived with depression for several years and attempted to take his own life in 2017. Following hospital treatment, he is passionate about the stigma around mental health, particularly surrounding men.