Alzheimer’s Research UK

Alzheimer’s Research UK has relaunched a bold campaign that challenges one of the most common misconceptions about dementia.

This World Alzheimer’s Month, the charity who are the UK’s leading specialist in finding preventions, treatments and a cure for dementia have created the #ShareTheOrange campaign in order to highlight that dementia is not an inevitable part of ageing, to help counter fatalism about the condition and show that hope lies in research.

Through a series of award-winning films, produced by Aardman Animations and featuring Samuel L. Jackson, Bryan Cranston and Christopher Eccleston, the campaign uses an orange to demonstrate the physical impact that diseases like Alzheimer’s have on the brain.

The UK’s leading dementia research charity launched the campaign’s first instalment in 2015, with the second and third chapters of the campaign following in 2018 and 2019. Each film features an orange gradually stripped away to demonstrate how the diseases that cause dementia physically attack the brain. The brain of a person with Alzheimer’s disease, the most common cause of dementia, weighs around 140g less than a healthy brain – about the weight of an orange.

One in five people still incorrectly believe that dementia is an inevitable part of ageing. Together the films help to counter this belief and show that dementia is caused by physical diseases that could be slowed, and ultimately stopped, through research.

People with dementia have been particularly hard hit by COVID-19, with figures suggesting a quarter of those dying from COVID-19 have also had dementia. The pandemic has also had a devastating impact on dementia research, with many projects and trials delayed or cancelled, and less funding available for new studies. These shocking figures give the #ShareTheOrange campaign new meaning, as it seeks to build public understanding and support for dementia research at a time when it has never been more needed.

“As our greatest long-term medical challenge, dementia causes untold heartache to families across the globe – but our #ShareTheOrange campaign shows that through research we can change this picture.” Tim Parry, Director of Communications at Alzheimer’s Research UK said.

“That message has never been so important, as people with dementia are bearing the brunt of COVID-19 and the future of dementia research is under threat from the pandemic. Now more than ever, dementia research needs our backing.”

You can view the films at and follow the charity online at  @AlzResearchUK

The charity relies on donations to fund their vital dementia research. To help make breakthroughs possible, donate today by or calling 0300 111 5555.


BookTrust launches its Time To Read Campaign to help 740,000 start school

BookTrust’s Time to Read campaign supports transition to primary school for 740,000 children in England and Northern Ireland

Today, BookTrust, the UK’s largest children’s reading charity launches its fifth annual Time to Read campaign which aims to get children and families reading together.

From September through to January 2021, BookTrust will be sending out Time to Read packs to every reception child in England and every primary one child in Northern Ireland, reaching a total of 740,000 children.

For children aged 4-5, starting school for the first time means establishing new routines at home and often learning to read and tasks set by school can be prioritised over reading for fun. Time to Read is designed to encourage families to relax and continue reading together at this critical transition point in their lives.

This year, the Time to Read pack includes a free copy of The Runaway Pea by Kjartan Poskitt and Alex Willmore, published by Simon and Schuster, alongside top tips about how reading can be done anytime and anywhere.

With creative ideas for sharing stories as a family, the pack aims to spark children’s imagination, help improve their language and listening as well as develop more practical skills such as making new friends and dealing with change. Reading together regularly as a family can also create a safe space for children to express themselves, something that children might be especially in need of following the coronavirus outbreak.

BookTrust is working in partnership with local authorities in England and the Education Authority in Northern Ireland to distribute Time to Read packs through schools and libraries, helping to connect communities and encourage them to share stories throughout the autumn term.

Alongside the book packs, during the week 19-25 October 2020, BookTrust will be sharing videos of popular picture book readings, top tips for how to get children reading as well as other book recommendations that we know children will love at this time.

“We know that families have faced many challenges these past few months, adjusting to a different way of life with schools, nurseries and libraries being closed. However, many parents and carers have told us that they have found more time to read and enjoy stories with their children during lockdown” Diana Gerald, BookTrust’s Chief Executive said.

“Sharing a book is about so much more than simply reading a story together. It creates a wonderful closeness, and it’s also an opportunity to talk about the themes in the book, whether that’s starting a new adventure, making friends, or simply learning to be brave.”

“It is so easy to stop the bedtime story or other shared reading once children can read for themselves, but that magical time doesn’t just help engage children in stories and reading; it also relaxes them, helps them understand the world around them, and often stimulates important conversations about what’s going on in their lives. We hope that Time to Read will encourage families to enjoy the benefits of reading together as their children adjust to new routines.”

There are a whole host of ways to support BookTrust and their mission to get children reading including through one-off or regular donations, fundraising or taking part in a challenge. You can find out more by heading to


Yorkshire Charity Trebles Output To Support Community

Huddersfield-headquartered charity – Yorkshire Children’s Centre – has ramped up the level of support given to Kirklees residents, as demand reaches record levels.

The organisation’s services helped almost 6,000 people in the initial 12 weeks of lockdown – three times more than in the whole of the 2019 calendar year. And demand has remained high as Kirklees’ battle with the pandemic has continued.

The roll out of a community anchor service for Batley and Birstall – soft-launched by Yorkshire Children’s Centre in January – has therefore been accelerated, as a result.

Initially set up to assist the Primary Care Networks with social prescribing – as part of the NHS’s 10-year plan to provide health-related help to the community – the service aimed to facilitate the integration of the voluntary and community sector within the social prescribing provision.

But deployment of the pilot scheme was quickly ramped up to reflect the growing physical and mental wellbeing needs of some of Kirklees’ most vulnerable people.

Thanks to a network of more than 425 generous volunteers – plus collaborations with existing organisations, mutual aid groups and other anchors such as the Jo Cox Foundation – Yorkshire Children’s Centre rapidly extended the range of services available to reflect fast-changing community requirements.

Additional support was provided for the Council’s helpline, for example, to ensure more people had access to the advice and signposting they required.

Routine welfare check-in calls were also made to those most at risk of loneliness and isolation. As part of these efforts, Yorkshire Children’s Centre coordinated and delivered over 300 support packages to care homes – comprising toiletries and treats, as well as artwork and letters from local school children.

Elsewhere, the charity’s wider community response actions saw it establish a Domestic Abuse Perpetrator helpline with the ongoing provision of support to help stop the cycle of abuse.

Despite the nationwide closure of many schools during lockdown, Brian Jackson College also remained open, to provide daily contact with every child who sought their support and supply paper-based learning packs for pupils who didn’t have laptop access. Support for lonely adults, vulnerable children, and families in need, was scaled up too, via the charity’s Child Contact, Community Connections and Hopeful Families services particularly.

Working as part of the Thriving Kirklees partnership, Yorkshire Children’s Centre sent over 4,000 activity packs to families – providiang information for children around maintaining their health, safety and wellbeing during COVID-19.

“To know that that our one organisation has helped just short of 6,000 people since the outbreak of the Coronavirus, makes me astonishingly proud,” said Yorkshire Children’s Centre’s Chair of Trustees, Roger Bryant.

“All of this against a backdrop of ongoing funding challenges, means additional deserved praise and thanks must go to our relentlessly hard-working staff and volunteers. They rallied to ensure we could not only maintain but boost the support we provide to Kirklees’ residents – young and old – when they needed us the most.

“One of our key challenges now, as an organisation, is to try and sustain volunteer levels while demand remains high, but people are getting back to work.”


UN: Zero Aichi Biodiversity Targets Met In Last Decade

A new report from the UN has reiterated the importance of biodiversity in addressing climate change long term food security. Moreover, the report concludes that the prevention of future pandemics lies in protecting biodiversity.

The fifth edition of the UN’s Global Biodiversity Outlook report, published by the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD), provides an authoritative overview of the state of nature worldwide and hopefully acts as a wake up call to the dangers involved in mankind’s current relationship with nature: continued biodiversity loss, and the ongoing degradation of ecosystems, are having profound consequences of human wellbeing and survival.

Notably, the study also serves as a “final report card” for the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, a series of 20 objectives set out in 2010, at the beginning of the UN’s Decade on Biodiversity, most of which were supposed to be reached by the end of this year.

However, none of the targets – which concern the safeguarding of ecosystems, and the promotion of sustainability – have been fully met, and only six are deemed to have been “partially achieved”.

“As nature degrades,” said Maruma Mrema, Executive Director of the Convention on Biological Diversity, “new opportunities emerge for the spread to humans and animals of devastating diseases like this year’s coronavirus. The window of time available is short, but the pandemic has also demonstrated that transformative changes are possible when they must be made.”

“Earth’s living systems as a whole are being compromised”, said Ms. Mrema, “and the more humanity exploits nature in unsustainable ways and undermines its contributions to people, the more we undermine our own well-being, security and prosperity.”

Although the lack of success in meeting the targets is a cause for concern, the authors of the Outlook are at pains to stress that virtually all countries are now taking some steps to protect biodiversity, without which the state of the world’s biodiversity would be considerably worse.

The bright spots include falling rates of deforestation, the eradication of invasive alien species from more islands, and raised awareness of biodiversity and its importance overall.

However, this encouraging progress can’t mask the fact that the natural world is suffering badly, and that the situation is getting worse. Financing is a case in point: funding for actions linked to biodiversity has been estimated at between $78 – $91 billion per year, way below the hundreds of billions needed.

And this figure is dwarfed by the amount of money spent on activities that are harmful to biodiversity, including some $500 billion for fossil fuels, and other subsidies that cause environmental degradation.

Contained within the report are several recommendations, or “transitions”, which map out a scenario for a world in which “business as usual” is halted, and environmental devastation is reversed.

Under the proposals, ecosystems would be restored and conserved; food systems would be redesigned to enhance productivity, whilst minimizing their negative effects; and the oceans would be managed sustainably.

The design of cities also comes under the spotlight, with calls for a reduced environmental footprint in urban areas, and “green infrastructure”, making space for nature within built landscapes.

The report amplifies the UN’s support for nature-based solutions, hailed as one of the most effective ways of combatting climate change. Alongside a rapid phase-out of fossil fuel use, they can provide positive benefits for biodiversity and other sustainability goals.

And, in relation to health concerns, and the spread of diseases from animals to humans, the report calls for a “One Health” transition, in which agriculture, the urban environment and wildlife are managed in a way that promotes healthy ecosystems and healthy people.

Reacting to the report, UN chief António Guterres said that the transitions represent an unprecedented opportunity to “build back better”, as the world emerges from the immediate impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic:

“Part of this new agenda must be to tackle the twin global challenges of climate change and biodiversity loss in a more coordinated manner, understanding both that climate change threatens to undermine all other efforts to conserve biodiversity; and that nature itself offers some of the most effective solutions to avoid the worst impacts of a warming planet.”


Global business and academic leaders launch new £10m challenge to protect the world against future pandemics

Launched by Dame Sally Davies, former Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for the United Kingdom, The Trinity Challenge will bring together the world’s best and brightest minds and global organisations to better protect the world against health emergencies.

The Trinity Challenge sets a series of urgent questions to harness the potential of data and analytics to learn and share lessons from the great innovations made to combat Covid-19 and to build resilience against future health emergencies. £10M of funding will be made available to Challenge Teams to support and scale their innovations across areas including economics, behavioural sciences, and epidemiology.

Convened by Dame Sally Davies in her role as Master of Trinity College, at the University of Cambridge, The Trinity Challenge has 22 Founding Members representing a diverse coalition of world leading organisations across the private, public and social sectors, united by the common aim of using data and advanced analytics to develop insights and practical actions to contribute to a world better protected from health emergencies.

The Founding Members are: Aviva, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Brunswick Group, University of Cambridge, Discovery Limited, Facebook, Global Virome Project, Google, GSK, HKUMed, Imperial College London, Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, Internews, Legal and General, LSE, McKinsey and Company, Microsoft, Northeastern University, Optum, Reckitt Benckiser, Tencent, Zenysis Technology.

The global health, social and economic impacts of COVID-19 have laid bare our current inability to identify, respond to and recover from health emergencies.

“There will be another COVID-19, and there is an opportunity for the international community to learn lessons now and prepare for the future.” Dame Sally Davies commented.

“The Trinity Challenge is a recognition by business, academia and philanthropy of the need for new, breakthrough ideas and approaches to beat the next pandemic. My career has been inspired by making sure all people, everywhere, have the best possible life chances. Health is integral to that, and we are seeing this now more than ever.We need to come together to make sure this never happens again.”

“We need new ways of working, new partnerships, new ideas, and believe that together this strong and growing coalition can and will generate acts that protect and improve lives and livelihoods everywhere.”

From anywhere in the world, Challenge Teams will be able to partner with global experts, drawing on their resources and support.

The Global Virome Project, who have been driving collaborative scientific initiatives to discover viral threats and stop future pandemics for over 10 years, highlight how important the partnership and collaboration aspect of the Challenge is, stating:

“The Trinity Challenge is a call to action that challenges us to think differently and act differently.

We at the Global Virome Project are enthusiastic about the opportunity the Trinity Challenge has created to forge new partners, stimulate novel ideas and generate fresh energy so that we can collectively address the challenges posed by the COVID19 pandemic while also better preparing the world to address all the threats to come.”

The Trinity Challenge is designed around sourcing and developing impact-led solutions that reflect the holistic nature of future health emergencies. Challenge Teams will develop changemaking ideas, tools and insights relevant to each of the three stages of these emergencies from identification, response and recovery. 

You can register your interest to participate in The Trinity Challenge at on the website at Formal applications will open in early October. The submission period will close in January 2021


1.06 Million Older People Not Receiving Pension Credit Entitlement

The failure to deliver Pension Credit to 1.06 million older people who are entitled to it is costing the health and social care systems in Great Britain an estimated £4 billion per year, says older people’s charity Independent Age.

Pension Credit – a benefit designed to keep the least well-off pensioners out of poverty – is currently being received by just six in 10 (61%) of those who should be receiving it – leaving many on a threadbare income and having to choose between heating and eating.

New research from the Centre for Research in Social Policy at Loughborough University, commissioned and published by Independent Age, has found that the low take-up is creating significant knock-on effects for the NHS and social care, costing taxpayers an estimated £4 billion per year.

This bill to the taxpayer is significantly higher than the annual cost of giving pensioners the £2.2 billion to which they are entitled but are not receiving.

Report authors Professor Donald Hirsch and Dr Juliet Stone found that the NHS bears the brunt of the additional demand, with pensioners on a low income likely to need more health care and services, such as prescriptions or the use of a hospital bed. The resulting costs to health care systems are estimated to be between £3.02 billion and £4.81 billion per year.

Those missing out on Pension Credit are also more likely to need social care – whether residential or home-based – which incurs additional costs to the state of between £66 million and £189 million per year.

The report concluded that if Pension Credit take-up was lifted from 61% to 100%, then almost 450,000 pensioners could be lifted out of poverty, reducing pensioner poverty to its lowest ever level, and resulting in substantial savings to the NHS and social care systems over the long term.

Now, Independent Age is calling for the Government to put in place an ambitious, publicly available action plan detailing how it will work to increase the uptake of Pension Credit over the next five years.

Chief Executive of Independent Age, Deborah Alsina MBE, said the report provided even more justification for the Government to take urgent action on improving the woefully low take-up of Pension Credit.

“What we can see from this report is that ensuring the poorest pensioners have a livable income is not only the right thing to do, it’s the economically responsible thing to do,” she said.

“Taxpayers are unnecessarily footing a health and social care bill of an estimated £4 billion, when if the Government ensured older people received the £2.2 billion to which they’re entitled, many of these additional costs to our health and care systems would be alleviated. Reducing pressure on our hospitals and care services is especially critical right now, as we continue to cope with the effects of COVID-19.

“A take-up rate of 61% for a benefit designed to keep older people out of poverty is indefensible – and this rate has stayed stagnant for a decade. Without this money, many people are prevented from living with dignity and having a social, well-connected later life.

“The Government needs to urgently create an action plan that contains high quality, up-to-date research into who is not claiming Pension Credit and why they are not receiving it. There needs to be recognition of the active role the Government must to play to increase Pension Credit take-up.”

Pension Credit recipient Bert Pearson, 94, said without the benefit, he would struggle to pay for basic essentials like heating and food.

“They rarely tell you what you’re eligible for – it’s up to you to go and find out for yourself,” Mr Pearson said. “For me, it’s opened up the door to other things, like the winter fuel payment. If I had any less than I did now, I’d be struggling to get by. It would make an awful difference.

“Many people don’t realise that when you’re on an income like mine, you have set out pound for pound where it’s going to go. Quite frankly, when you’ve done that, there’s nothing left.”

Independent Age has been working for over 150 years to support older people to remain independent. You can find out more about their volunteering opportunities, donations and other ways you can support the charity on the website.


New ‘Liability Map’ Shows How We Can Hold Parties Responsible For Climate Change

A global climate coalition have released a “liability roadmap”: a first-of-its-kind tool outlining how local to global decision makers, including government officials, can hold polluting industries liable for the climate damage they knowingly cause, while unlocking climate finance needed to address the climate crisis and implement solutions.

This roadmap, released just one week before UN climate week, is the next stage in the global campaign to Make Big Polluters Pay.

Last September, international climate organisations launched a global call for Big Polluter liability at the UN Secretary General’s Climate Action Summit in New York City. At COP25 in Madrid, the demands hundreds of thousands of people to make Big Polluters pay were delivered to government delegates. Organisations and signatories echoing this call hail from around 70 countries including Bolivia, The Philippines, and Nigeria.

“Big Polluters have wrecked our climate, ecosystems, lives and livelihoods, for too long. They manage to abdicate any responsibility, and only benefit from the damage they cause, which falls disproportionately on Global South communities, Indigenous Peoples, people of colour, women, workers, farmers, peasants and low-income communities.” said Sara Shaw, Climate Justice & Energy Program Coordinator, Friends of the Earth International.

The Liability Roadmap is a tool we can use to call to account those who have knowingly caused the climate crisis, and make them pay. Not only that, it lays the foundations for systemic change – reducing corporate power and ensuring resources for the much-needed just transformation,”

Liability has taken on new importance amid the COVID-19 pandemic and unprecedented climate disasters. Many Big Polluters are in large part responsible for the multi-faceted crises people are facing and are still attempting to profit from fuelling it – demanding government bailouts and rolling out PR schemes that position themselves as solutions.

“The liability roadmap is about more than lawsuits and courtrooms. This is about making Big Polluters pay for the havoc they’ve wreaked by fuelling the climate crisis and about forcing them to end their abuses. This is about making Big Polluters pay for causing decades of suffering and destruction in communities on the global frontlines of the climate crisis, with no end in sight.” commented Sriram Madhusoodanan, U.S. climate campaign director, Corporate Accountability.

“The roadmap will carry us further down the road where Big Polluters are forced to put people’s well-being and the well-being of the Earth and its ecosystems above expansion, extraction, and profit making,”

Fossil fuel and other polluting industry liability is a growing area of focus for climate experts, activists, academics and governments alike as the industry’s long history of denial and the link between industry emissions and climate impacts becomes more evidenced. From U.S. states to Vanuatu to Peru, elected officials and people are exploring holding polluters like the fossil fuel industry liable for its long history of deceit and environmental destruction.

Earlier this year, the expansion of Heathrow Airport was successfully stopped after civil society argued it was a violation of the UK government’s Paris Agreement commitments. The Philippines’ commission on human rights has concluded that the fossil fuel industry can be held legally responsible for their role in climate change. Indian fisherman challenging the International Finance Corporation (IFC) secured a precedent-setting judgement in the U.S. Supreme Court in 2019.

There are a variety of ways you can get involved with the campaign including featuring the Liability Roadmap on your website, blog, or newsletter. Additionally, sharing the liability roadmap with decision makers and allies you have connections with who you think might be interested in implementing its measures or organising around it is helpful. You can also reach out to any “influencers” you are connected with and ask them to help amplify on social media.


Sharp Rise In Legacies Left To Charities During Lockdown

New research from Co-op Legal Services shows an increase in donations in Wills of 56% in the last 12 months. The sharpest increase happened during lockdown, with legacy gifting increasing by 81% between 23 March and 30 June compared to the same period last year.

Gifts in Wills – also called charitable legacies – are an essential source of fundraising for charities and without them, many charities we know and rely on may be unable to continue with their vital work. 

Gifts to cancer charities remain the most common legacy gifts our Will Writers see, and these have seen the most significant uplift, with an increase of 77% during lockdown. Gifts to local causes have also increased significantly, and these are the second most common types of charitable gifts we now see being left.

Cancer Research UK explains how Gifts in Wills support their work: “Without legacy gifts, Cancer Research UK would not have made such incredible progress. Our research is world-leading. We have been integral in seeing 10-year cancer survival in the UK go from 1 in 4 people in the 1970s to 2 in 4 people today. And a third of what we fund can be attributed to legacies.

James Antoniou, Head of Wills at the Co-op Legal services said, said: “It’s moving to see that at such a difficult time for so many, people are still including gifts to charities within their wills. Interestingly, in addition to monetary gifts, we’ve seen some unique personal effects such as a collection of guitars and a classic red mini being left to charity through wills.

This increase in generosity will make a huge difference to charitable causes and just shows why it’s so important for people wanting to make this difference that they do put a will in place”.




Clear Mask Deal Leaves Questions Unanswered Says Deaf Charity


The UK Government’s announcement on the procurement of transparent face masks misses out “essential details”, a leading deaf charity Deaf has warned.

Deaf Action’s ‘Clear Masks For All’ campaign calls for clear masks to be made available in educational and medical settings for all those who need them.

Edinburgh-based charity Deaf Action works with people who are Deaf BSL users, deafened, deafblind and hard of hearing. In Scotland, over 1 million people are estimated to be living with some degree of hearing loss.

The Department for Health and Social Care confirmed that 250,000 ClearMasks will be delivered to NHS and social care workers to benefit people who rely on lipreading when communicating.

In contrast to ‘opaque’ masks, the transparent versions contain a plastic window, which allows for lipreading to take place.

Although Edinburgh based charity Deaf Action has welcomed the news, the organisation has expressed concern over the Government’s long- term plan for clear masks, with the ClearMask design being a single-use product, meaning that not only is the supply currently limited but there are issues surrounding sustainability, too.

The Department for Health and Social Care said they will continue to work with providers on future orders of the product “based on demand”.

The Government have said the procurement applies to the whole of the UK and that they are working with the devolved administrations on their share of the masks.

Through their ‘Clear Masks For All’ campaign, Deaf Action want clear, transparent masks to be made available in medical settings, as well as in education and to members of the public who need them.

“While we appreciate the UK Government taking this long overdue decision, this is only the first step in ensuring deaf people don’t miss out on everyday conversations” commented Phillip Gerrard, CEO at Deaf Action.

“With only 250,000 single-use ClearMasks being made available to NHS and social care teams, we have serious concerns over the long- term sustainability of this Government plan, and how far this will go to support deaf people across the UK – including Scotland.

“The UK Government must urgently provide further clarity around this deal, so we can work to tackle the preventable barriers and isolation deaf people are experiencing during this crisis.”

Liam O’Dell, Campaign Lead notes that whilst Deaf Action appreciate that people are able to remove their masks to provide communication if needed without breaking the rules, this means people are forced to remove a mask that is needed there for protection.

“Even though the Scottish Government has said that you can still have a socially distanced conversation without masks but there is still a concern about if someone coughs or sneezes or if they are shouting a bit louder as people do that sometimes thinking it helps deaf people.

“People are fine to use the exemption, but at Deaf Action we would rather that people adopt a solution that is both clear and safe in terms of communication and that is the transparent masks, because removing masks altogether removes some element of the protection.”

Alongside clear masks, the charity also wants to see a Government campaign aimed at raising deaf awareness during this pandemic, including using gestures and learning basic sign language to remove communication barriers.

Deaf Action is continuing to call on members of the public to raise this issue with their local MSP, using the email template available on their website.


Luciana Berger Appointed As Chair Of Maternal Mental Health Alliance

Former MP Luciana Berger has been appointed as the new Chair of the Maternal Mental Health Alliance (MMHA) and will take up her role at the start of next month.

Founded in 2011, MMHA is a coalition of 97 organisations, clinicians, and people with lived experience working together to improve mental health support during pregnancy and postnatally. Since then, MMHA has successfully campaigned to address gaps in UK specialist perinatal mental health care. However, despite significant progress, more work is needed to tackle the postcode lottery for mothers, partners, and babies.

As an award-winning campaigner and long-time advocate for the improvement of mental health services and parity between mental and physical health, Luciana Berger brings significant experience, influence, and energy to the MMHA and its Everyone’s Business Campaign which works to ensure that all women throughout the UK who experience perinatal mental health problems to receive the care they and their families need, wherever and whenever they need it.

During her time in parliament, Luciana secured several legislative changes, including calling on the government to expand employer responsibility to include Mental Health First Aiders and successfully amending a bill to introduce a ‘breathing space’ for those in mental health crisis who are struggling with serious debt.

“I am delighted to have been elected to serve as chair of the Maternal Mental Health Alliance. Perinatal mental health is an urgent and pressing issue for the whole of society. The standard of care women receive depends on their postcode, and this must end.” Luciana Berger said.

“I look forward to working with MMHA’s members to support women and families, improve standards, and press for world-class mental health services for women before and after the birth of their child.”

Now Managing Director of Public Affairs and Advocacy at Edelman UK, Luciana previously served as the Member of Parliament for Liverpool Wavertree for almost a decade. During her time in the Commons, Berger held prominent front and backbench roles, including as the first-ever Shadow Cabinet Member for Mental Health and member of the Health and Social Care Select Committee.

Dr Alain Gregoire, outgoing Chair and soon-to-be Honorary President of the Maternal Mental Health Alliance said:“With Luciana as our new Chair, I know that the Maternal Mental Health Alliance will flourish. The powerful advocacy we provide will continue to improve the lives of women and families all over the UK.”

There are a variety of ways you can support the work of the MMHA including through donation and getting involved with their campaigning work.