Every year Portsmouth Cathedral runs a theme to engage with the local community and bases events, activities and available information around it.
And for 2019 Reverend Canon Peter Leonard, canon chancellor at the cathedral, felt that exploring both mental and physical health was appropriate. The Living Well theme was launched at the cathedral earlier this year with talks from the founder of the Mindful Employer scheme, Richard Frost, and mental health advocate and comedian Ruby Wax.
Essentially the cathedral is acting as a safe place that will signpost people to services that can help. Throughout the year more talks, activities and events will be held to consider how to look after all aspects of our wellbeing.
Rev Canon Leonard, who was acting dean at the cathedral last year, explained more. He said: ‘It started in 2018. I had a number of conversations with people, including members of the public and council leader Councillor Gerald Vernon-Jackson and MP Stephen Morgan, because I wanted to make sure our theme was really relevant to people in Portsmouth.
‘The sense was that mental health was a key issue for the city. We wanted something that looked at mental health in a positive way and the team came up with Living Well, which is not just about people being ill but how do you live well and look after your mental and physical health.
‘People come into the cathedral to look after their spiritual needs but if your physical and mental needs aren’t being met then that doesn’t matter.’
— Fiona Callingham (@FCallingham22) May 14, 2019