Poppyscotland will next week host an open day at its Ayrshire Welfare Centre, with the aim of reducing the stigma surrounding mental health, and to promote the mental health support services which are available to the Armed Forces Community in the area…

The event, which is taking place on Wednesday, 15th May from 11am-3pm, will bring people together in an informal setting to meet with specialist providers, and to help them understand what support is available and how to access it. All serving or former military personnel in the Ayrshire area, as well as Reservists and family members, are more than welcome to come along.

Visitors on the day will get a chance to interact and speak to a host of partner organisations such as Combat Stress, Samaritans, Employable and Alzheimer’s Scotland. The event will further increase the awareness of mental health support that is available to the Armed Forces community in Ayrshire and provide knowledge of other services available to them.

David Cooke, the Poppyscotland Welfare Services Manager for the West of Scotland, said: “The rigors of conflict and the wider demands on our Armed Forces, together with the challenging transition from the military to civilian life, can have a significant impact on the long-term mental health of veterans and their families.

“Mental health problems in our Armed Forces community take many different forms with post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, anxiety and social isolation being the most high profile. Such issues can be incredibly debilitating for the sufferer, and often close family and friends bear the brunt of the condition, too.

“With the right treatment, those who experience mental health issues can learn to successfully live with and manage them, and that is why Poppyscotland places such value in providing help through events such as our forthcoming open day.”

For more information on the Mental Health Awareness Open Day, please contact the Ayrshire Welfare Centre on 01563 598 000, or at [email protected].