Mental Health Foundation

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Mental Health Foundation
Legal statusCharity
HeadquartersStudio 2
197 Long Lane
SE1 4PD[2]
Region served
United Kingdom
Chief Executive
Mark Rowland[3]

The Mental Health Foundation is a UK charity, whose mission is "to help people to thrive through understanding, protecting, and sustaining their mental health."[4]


The Mental Health Foundation was founded in 1949, as the Mental Health Research Fund, by Derek Richter,[1] a neurochemist and director of research at Whitchurch Hospital. Richter enlisted the help of stockbroker Ian Henderson, who became the chair, while Victoria Cross recipient Geoffrey Vickers became chair of the research committee.

In 1972, the Mental Health Foundation took its current name, shifting its "focus away from laboratory research and towards working directly with—and learning from—people [who] experience mental health problems."

The Foundation has also focussed on "overlooked and under-researched areas," including personality disorders and issues affecting various ethnic groups. In 1999, the Foundation took their work with learning disabilities forwards, creating the Foundation for People with Learning Disabilities.[5]

Mental Health Awareness Week[edit]

Each year, for a week in May, the Mental Health Foundation leads Mental Health Awareness Week.

Mental Health Awareness Week was first held in 2001, and became one of the biggest mental health awareness events in the world.[6]


Year Themes
2013[7] Physical activity and wellbeing
2014[8] Anxiety
2015[9] Mindfulness
2016[10] Relationships
2017[11] Surviving or thriving?
2018[12] Stress: are we coping?
2019[13] Body image: how we think and feel about our bodies
2020[14] Kindness
2021[15] Nature and the environment
2022[16] Loneliness
2023[17] Anxiety

Green ribbon[edit]

A Mental Health Foundation donation box with green ribbons

The green ribbon is the "international symbol for mental health awareness."

The Foundation's green ribbon ambassadors, include: Olly Alexander, Aisling Bea, Olivia Colman, Matt Haig, David Harewood, Nadiya Hussain, Grant Hutchison, Alex Lawther, and Graham Norton.

The movement uses the hashtag #PinItForMentalHealth.[18][19]


The Foundation's total income for the financial year ending 31 March 2018 was £5.8m, with sources including donations (individual and corporate), legacies and grants.[20]


The Foundation is an incorporated UK charity headed by a board of 12 trustees. Aisha Sheikh-Anene was appointed Chair of the board of trustees in 2020.[21]

The president of the Foundation is Dr Jacqui Dyer MBE[22] and the patron is Princess Alexandra.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Our history". Mental Health Foundation. Retrieved 6 February 2023.
  2. ^ "Contact us". 30 September 2022.
  3. ^ "Mark Rowland, Chief Executive". 12 January 2016. Retrieved 9 March 2019.
  4. ^ "Who We Are and What We Do". 30 November 2015.
  5. ^ "Our History".
  6. ^ "Mental Health Awareness Week 2019". 20 December 2018. Retrieved 9 March 2019.
  7. ^ "Let's Get Physical Report". 2 May 2013.
  8. ^ "Are You Anxiety Aware?". 2 April 2014.
  9. ^ "Mental Health Awareness Week 2015 Supporter Kit". 2 March 2015.
  10. ^ "Relationships".
  11. ^ "Mental Health Awareness Week 2017 preview". 5 May 2017.
  12. ^ "Stress: are we coping?". 21 March 2018.
  13. ^ "Mental Health Awareness Week Instagram graphics". 14 March 2019.
  14. ^ "Kindness".
  15. ^ "Nature and the environment".
  16. ^ "Loneliness".
  17. ^ "Anxiety".
  18. ^ "Green Ribbon Ambassadors". Retrieved 9 March 2019.
  19. ^ "Green Ribbon FAQs". 14 February 2019.
  20. ^ "Annual reports and key documents". 12 November 2015. Retrieved 9 March 2019.
  21. ^ "Mental Health Foundation appoints Aisha Sheikh-Anene as Chair of the Board of Trustees". 15 June 2022. Retrieved 30 September 2022.
  22. ^ "Mental Health Foundation announces new prevention strategy and new President". 21 November 2019. Retrieved 30 September 2022.