The Speaking Out award is given to people who have made an impact by sharing their own experiences of mental health problems. There are so many people who have talked openly this year, so it was an almost impossible task for Mind to select one person for this year's Speaking Out award.
Clarke Carlisle has a history of depression and was reported missing by his family last September, who feared for his life. In a candid interview with Liverpool's Radio City – which won the Radio award this year – Clarke discusses this period of his life including the support he received from a passerby. Carrie was interviewed alongside him, and was recognised for her bravery in recounting the build up to Clarke's disappearance and how she responded when she realised he was missing.
As Clarke and his wife, Carrie Carlisle, accepted the Speaking Out Award at the 25th annual Virgin Money Giving Mind Media Awards he said:
"Don't be shackled, do not be burdened, do not be conditioned by what has gone before. The stiff British upper lip, it's gone. That code of silence around what you're thinking and what you're feeling, it's gone."
They were interviewees who really shone out for our judges who commented that it is really unusual to hear about a mental health crisis from both sides of a couple. It is also very rare to hear from people in active recovery and who admit that their mental health is still fluctuating.
"People have said to me, how could he put you through that? And my husband said to me he felt like such a burden to me and his family. Let me be clear, my husband didn't put me through anything. If you're suffering, you're not putting anyone through anything. The illness is putting us through something. And the illness is putting you and your family collectively through something."
Judges were completely blown away by the honesty and rawness of the interviews he took part in over the last year.