It's been almost a year and a half since The Prince's Trust launched its Mental Health Strategy (pdf, 248kb). National Mental Health Advisor Yannis Munro discusses the significant steps the charity has made towards supporting young people, as well as making the organisation a better place to work.

The three-year strategy has been funded and supported by the Royal Mail Group and its support has played a key role to our strategy's development. The Royal Mail Group wants to drive real change in people’s awareness and support more people with mental health problems, both within its own organisation and in the communities it serves – and has recently launched a film to highlight this.

As a result, The Prince’s Trust has developed pilots in four centres, where we offer different therapies to our young people such as one-to-one counselling, group wellbeing sessions and art therapy. We are also in the process of piloting the position of a Wellbeing Executive in Northern Ireland. This post is funded by the Royal Mail Group and will be able to support our young people as well as promote wellbeing to our staff.

We are also about to launch a pilot of 40 teams of our Team programme with increased mental health literacy. Young Minds has been commissioned to review our biggest programme and suggest ways of contributing positively to the mental wellbeing of our young people. In October 2017 we also signed the Time to Change Employer Pledge, a commitment to you all to change how we think and act about mental health at every level of this organisation.

Time to Talk Day is the perfect opportunity to get our workplace talking about mental health. Time to Change is the country’s biggest programme to challenge mental health stigma and discrimination and is run by the charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness. Many of us will answer ‘fine’, even when we’re not. Too often, mental health problems are treated as a taboo subject – something not to be talked about, especially at work. However, mental health affects us all and we should feel able to talk about it.

One in four of us will experience a mental health problem and nine in 10 say they have faced negative treatment from others as a result. By choosing to be open about mental health, we are all part of a movement that’s changing the conversation around mental health and ensuring that no one is made to feel isolated or alone for having a mental health problem.

As part of our ongoing commitment to this, we are supporting Time to Talk Day. Taking place on Thursday 1 February, this is a day when everyone is encouraged to have a conversation about mental health.

Make some time for this great opportunity to contribute to our mental wellbeing at work. We want everyone who works here to feel they can be open about their mental health, and ask for support if they need it. It’s #TimeToTalk now! Let’s make conversations happen.