Local mental health charity invites people to help lift spirits this Christmas

Mental health charity Devon Mind is proud to have teamed up with a renowned local singer-songwriter to launch ‘Home This Christmas’, a campaign which seeks to bring the community together and help people feel less isolated during this unique and challenging holiday season.

The lead-up to Christmas can be one of the hardest and loneliest times of the year for many people, including those spending time in hospital. That’s what inspired 18-year-old Riley Jayne from North Cornwall to write ‘Home This Christmas’, an inspiring song which aims to capture and reflect “the beauty, strength and support of family and caregivers”. Now more than ever, feelings of isolation and solitude are ones with which more of us can relate. We all hope to be ‘Home This Christmas’.

Devon Mind has partnered with colleagues at Cornwall Mind to invite residents to submit photos or videos of past family Christmas celebrations, for a chance to be featured in the song’s music video. A spokesperson for Riley, who won the ‘Bude’s Got Talent’ competition in 2016, outlined that: “We want to try to capture all sides of spending time in hospital or a care facility, past family Christmas celebrations, moments of joy, togetherness, support, care and comfort, as well as loneliness and isolation.” The video will be produced by Cornwall-based Hill Tribe Media and released alongside a fundraiser for both charities in November.

Speaking about the song, Riley’s spokesperson explained: “The inspiration for ‘Home This Christmas’ came during a stay in a mental health hospital, when Riley Jayne found herself staring out of a window, waiting for a visit, and wondering if she would be home for the holidays.” The track took on extra significance in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, which the national Mind charity reports has negatively affected the mental health of up to 60% of adults and 68% of children and young people. As a result, Riley has chosen to release the song to raise money for her local Mind charities.

“As part of her ongoing challenges with mental health, Riley Jayne has composed ‘Home this Christmas’ to share some of her difficulties, in a bid to help others suffering with the same issues, and to raise awareness and funds for the mental health charity Mind,” the statement continues. “The vision for the music video is to incorporate real photos and films supplied by patients and residents to really bring the song, and the issues it covers, to life. We are therefore asking for the support of the public who would be willing to contribute to this special project.”

Olivia Craig, CEO for Devon Mind, commented: “We’re incredibly excited to be working with Riley Jayne and Cornwall Mind on this inspiring campaign. We all know this year has been tough, so to engage the local community and help people feel less isolated in the run-up to Christmas is a great opportunity for all of us. I can’t wait to see the finished video with everyone’s photos and videos!”

If you would like to submit content to be considered for the music video, please visit www.devonmind.com/xmas. Anyone interested in taking part should register their interest on the website or email fundraise@devonmind.com for more details.

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