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27 October 2021

We support launch of new online directory of Black-led mental health initiatives

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Today, charities The Ubele Initiative, Mind, YoungMinds and Best Beginnings have launched Bayo, a platform providing information about, and access to, a variety of initiatives, communities and mental health services created by and for the Black community - all in one place.

For those who are in need of immediate mental health support, we are proud to be able to provide our Shout 85258 text messaging service in support of Bayo.

Shout is free, confidential, anonymous and won’t show up on your phone bill. It is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you’re feeling anxious or low, or want to start a conversation about something that’s on your mind, text ‘LET IT OUT’ to 85258. Our trained volunteers are here to listen with empathy and without judgement to whatever you'd like to share.

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Funded by the National Emergencies Trust, Bayo has been launched in response to increased mental health needs across the UK in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, which have been felt disproportionately by Black and brown communities.

The structural inequalities of racism massively impact the mental health and wellbeing of Black people. As a racialised community, many Black people are exposed to a multitude of mental health stressors while also facing a severe lack of accessible and appropriate mental health support.

Black people have in many cases been inordinately impacted by Covid-19: from high mortality rates and increased unemployment, to a rise in anxiety and a lack of opportunity to healthily process grief. This has led to a disproportionate level of Black people struggling with mental health challenges.

When overwhelmed or experiencing distress, we all cope in different ways. By bringing together Black-led collectives, initiatives, community-run services and mental health professionals, Bayo aims to solve the difficulty of finding help.

Dr Amanda Brown-Bennett, our Chair of Diversity and Inclusion and a Clinical Supervisor for Shout, said:

“While there is a greater worldwide connection through shared experiences directly resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic, there has also been greater exposure to universal stressors. Among these stressors, what has also been apparent is the disproportionately high negative implications upon Black communities.

“We are pleased to be supporting the launch of Bayo and offering Black children, young people, men and women access to free, immediate and confidential support with issues such as discrimination, identity issues, abuse, depression or suicide by texting ‘LET IT OUT’ to 85258 any time of the day or night.”

For more information, visit http://www.bayo.ubele.org/.

Whatever's going on, letting it out can help. When you text us, there's a trained volunteer at the other end to listen to you and have a conversation with you - silently, by text message - until you feel calmer. Text 'LET IT OUT' to 85258 at any time of day or night.

Text ‘LET IT OUT’ to


here for you 24/7