"There are two ways you can feel alone. There is the good alone which involves a duvet, some pizza, some more pizza, Comedy Central and no bra. And there is the bad alone, where you think the world is too much and no one else feels the same." -Sofie Hagan
One in four people in the UK experience a mental health problem each year and, for people with anxiety, every day can feel like they’re about to go on stage. Mind is making a real difference in peoples’ lives by providing advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem.
Our partnership with Comedy Central launches this month with a series of TV spots featuring famous comedians who have all experienced anxiety and can relate to how it can feel to have a mental health problem. Felicity Ward, Tom Allen, Sofie Hagen, Angela Barnes and six other comics all talk openly about how they have learnt to manage anxiety, in the sketches which aim to help break down the taboos associated with mental health issues through laughter.
As well as raising funds for the charity, the TV spots will also push to the Mind website where videos of the ten full sets from the comedians will be available.
Jill Offman, MD of Comedy Central UK, comments, “We asked our employees what issues they most wanted to help and mental health was the one everyone felt most passionately about. We are very lucky to have some fantastic comedians to support this partnership, all of whom have experienced anxiety; something that is particularly prevalent amongst young people who make up Comedy Central’s core audience. Our aim is to shine a light on all the fantastic work that Mind does, whilst also helping to break down the taboos of talking about and sharing experiences of mental health problems.
Paul Farmer, Chief Executive of Mind says, “We’re delighted Comedy Central has chosen to support Mind, and launch the partnership in such an innovative, and engaging, way! We know laughter can boost wellbeing and hope that the #PerformanceAnxiety campaign will bring young people together, make them laugh and – most importantly – reach an audience of people who may not feel that they can talk about their mental health.
“The Comedy Central partnership will also help us reach a point where anyone with a mental health problem feels able to ask for, and access, the help they need. Money raised will fund our work including the Mind Infoline, information and advice services, and the campaigning we do to secure a better deal everybody who experiences a mental health problem.”
Comedian Felicity Ward, whose one-woman show ‘What If There Is No Toilet’ focuses on some of her own personal anxiety experiences adds:
"I wanted to be involved in this campaign because I have anxiety, depression and an unpredictable bum hole (Irritable Bowel Syndrome). I figure if I keep talking about it eventually people will feel sorry for me and give me lots of money. Also, Mind do great work and I'm hoping some of their goodwill will rub off on me."
Sofie Hagen, winner of 2015’s Edinburgh newcomer award says:
"There are two ways you can feel alone. There is the good alone which involves a duvet, some pizza, some more pizza, Comedy Central and no bra. And there is the bad alone, where you think the world is too much and no one else feels the same. I am supporting Mind because people need to know that a lot of people are struggling with something and we should all struggle together – with pizza."