Good friends who understand depression can be a life-line. Friends in Need is a free and supportive community for everyone affected by depression, so you don’t have to go through it alone. You can find new friends in your local area and online, so you’ll always have a safe and friendly space when you need it most.

And it’s not just about talking. Friends in Need is inspired by the Five Ways to Wellbeing, simple ideas we can all try in our everyday lives to help us feel good and function well. The Five Ways to Wellbeing are, Connect, Be active, Take notice, Keep learning, and Give. It means you’ll find fun and uplifting ways to get better, stay well and to help support others.

We work with CCGs and local authorities to build sustainable peer support networks within the local community to help combat the loneliness and isolation that often comes with depression. We currently have partnerships in Kensington and Chelsea, Croydon, Southwark, Windsor, Ascot and Maidenhead and West Berkshire. 

Our group activities are all fun and uplifting ways to boost your mood and lift your spirits, to end the isolation and loneliness of depression. They’re all things that people in our network have told us they find helpful in managing depression, and each activity is arranged and facilitated by group members themselves.

"It's lovely to get out of the flat and do something different. I enjoy being part of the group and learning, and I always feel welcomed by all." Fatima

Is there a waiting list?

There’s no waiting list and no commitment. You can join in with as many or as few of the activities as you like.

What if I’m not well enough?

With depression it can be hard to get out and about. We understand the darker days and how terrifying it can be to meet new people, so you can be sure of a warm and friendly welcome each time you come. There’s no pressure; you can join us when you feel up to it and take time away whenever you need to.

How does it work?

Our Friends in Need coordinators will have a chat with you on the phone to learn more about you and what you’d like from the network. We’ll support you in finding activities to boost your mood and lift your spirits, and can even help you start an activity of your own to share with the network. You can also ask for a referral from your GP or therapist if they’re based in the area.

Croydon Wellbeing Network

Friends in Need Croydon is open to residents (over 18’s) who live with depression and anxiety. You can access Friends in Need Croydon through Croydon IAPT services and by refferal by Mind in Croydon staff.  

 https://slam-iapt.nhs.uk/croydon/welcome-to-croydon-iapt/                                                                                                              www.mindincroydon.org.uk 

To join our network or to find out more you can also email: friendsinneed@mindincroydon.org.uk

Our group activities are all fun and uplifting ways to boost your mood and lift your spirits, to end the isolation and loneliness of depression. They’re all things that people in our network have told us they find most helpful in managing depression, and each activity is arranged and facilitated by group members themselves. We meet most days across the Croydon area and our activities include:

  • a walking group
  • cinema trips
  • pub quizzes
  • a reading group
  • jewellery-making
  • museum trips
  • glass painting, mosaics and ceramics

Southwark Wellbeing Network

Through Friends in Need, we support Southwark Residents who’ve been affected by depression & anxiety to: connect, engage and recover. Our network is open to anyone over the age of 18 who lives with depression and/or anxiety. The group is based in Southwark and is completely free to join.

To join our network or to find out more, email our Friends in Need coordinator;  peersupport@lambethandsouthwarkmind.org.uk

West Berkshire Wellbeing Network

Our Friends in Need wellbeing network is open West Berkshire residents (over 18’s) who live with depression and anxiety and is completely free to use.

To join our network or find out more call Ansa on 07908 265 181 or email Ansa@depressionalliance.org

Our group activities are all fun and uplifting ways to boost your mood and lift your spirits, to end the isolation and loneliness of depression. They’re all things that people in our network have told us they find most helpful in managing depression, and each activity is arranged and facilitated by group members themselves. We meet most days across West Berkshire and our activities include local walks, an arts programme and friendly meet ups for coffee and a chat.

West London Wellbeing network

Our Friends in Need wellbeing network is open to anyone over the age of 18 who lives with depression and/or anxiety. The group is based in West London and is completely free to join.

To join our network or to find out more email our Friends in Need coordinator on friendsinneed@kcmind.org.uk

We meet most days across the Kensington and Chelsea borough and our activities include:

  • a walking group    
  • a social and music appreciation group
  • meals out
  • jewellery-making
  • coffee evenings
  • book break
  • regular museum / gallery visits

Sign up to the West London newsletter to receive regular updates about meet ups

Windsor, Ascot and Maidenhead wellbeing network

Hello from Friends in Need in Windsor, Ascot and Maidenhead. (over 18s) We want to help you manage your depression and anxiety by inviting you to try our uplifting, fun and free activities.

We especially welcome older people, military families and those with long term conditions. Come and feel supported whilst having a chat and a cuppa with others who understand how you might be feeling.

To join our network or to find out more, call Debbie on 07964 376 951 or email debbie.workman@bucksmind.org.uk.

We understand that you may feel apprehensive before meeting others in the group and we may be able to meet you individually for a chat beforehand: You will be asked to complete our Welcome form.

Our activities are:

  • local walks and picnics in the Summer ·        
  • arts and crafts ·        
  • yoga ·        
  • cycling ·        
  • a gardening project ·        
  • social evenings eg pub quizzes and games nights ·        
  • mindfulness for deep relaxation ·        
  • guest speakers to help us in our journey to recovery ·        
  • monthly day trips to local attractions

Friends in Need is a community that was created by the UK charity Depression Alliance. Following a merger between Depression Alliance and the mental health charity Mind in August 2016, Friends in need is now run by Mind

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