Meet the Local Associations

6: Portsmouth and District by the

Rev. Kenneth Parkinson

three years of life and District Mental Health has

nearly DURING the Portsmouth

Association for tried to interest as many people as possible within the City and its boundaries in the urgent task of building up the mental health of Our white posters, the community. flashes: cornered with green "Mental Health", have gradually infiltrated into public buildings and organisations and this wide and intensive advertising, aided by the valuable support of the Portsmouth Evening News, has been considered an essential task of the new association. Further publicity has been secured by Open Meetings and Brains Trusts dealing with mental health and illness in relationship to society as a whole, and by Annual Flag Days and The other money-raising events. Association has received much help from local Statutory bodies and other Voluntary associations and members of these serve on its Executive Committee. In fact, members of the Association only view their voluntary work as complementary to all that is done by the Statutory Health, Hospital and Welfare Services and work essentially in co-operation with them. It is significant that the first and present Chairman of the Association, Doctor Michael Eddings, has recently been elected to the newly formed Portsmouth Council of Social Service Executive Committee. Current projects of the Association, such as the support for a learner's swimming pool at an E.S.N. School and a psychiatric social club are also meant to achieve aims of the Statutory Bodies which for various reasons they cannot fulfil. Such partnership was present right at the foundation of the

Association. 1960




Health 80

Mental Health Wej the City's Health af; Education services greatly helped. arouse interest and thought about'' problems of mental health. A furtt1' stimulus was produced by a us?'' series of articles in the Portsmof, Evening News which described eX'-, ing care in the city of the sick, and how this would be related the Mental Health Act of 1959 ^ new what strides forward demanded. The conception and of community care of the menta' sick in the Act gave much scope voluntary bodies prepared to vvo' with the Statutory Services. Such vV3 the background which produced Steering Committee set up by Alde man J. P. D. Lacey, Chairman of Health Services Committee of mouth Corporation. Support for was evident at a Public addressed by Mrs. H. Halpin from N.A.M.H. Accordingly the mouth Branch was inaugurated 0 July 13 th, 1960. Year



organised by






^ P?rf

Educating public opinion

The initial interest and concer aroused in 1960 has been fed by series of five public meetings held &C; Winter. These meetings, some which have been lectures and so1*1', discussions, have aimed partly ?; dispel the fear and ignorance mental disorder and partly to rel3' the problems of mental illness and ', treatment to Society as a whole. K, Association has heard lectures pointing the problems of mental d1. order in different age groups such a "Guidance for Parents of Slow Lear11, ing Children" and more general on.e', such as "The Nature of Mental ~0l\ order". An interesting experiment W', been to hold three public followed by questions from tfl audience. ,




Treasurer of


the AssociaR. A. G.

Mr. l?n>?ddard, presenting


Meet Portsmouth and District Association for Mental Health.

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