New music festival ready to tackle mental health stigma in Welsh capital

This weekend, 40 acts will take to the stage in a new music festival that will increase awareness of mental health, as well as raising money for a Cardiff charity. ‘Cardiff Mind Fest’ has been organised by three local music promoters – Rockpie, Red Medicine and Godisinthetv zine – with the support of local mental health organisations, including Journeys and Making Minds.

Acts including renowned Welsh poet and playwright Patrick Jones, and Welsh Music Prize finalist ‘Laurence Made Me Cry’ aka Jo Whitby, will perform across four stages at venues in Cardiff City Centre on Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th November. The venues for Saturday 23rd are Undertone and Four Bars, with The Moon Club and The Full Moon the venues for Sunday 24th.

Festival logo bannerThe event will raise funds for Cardiff Mind, which provides a range of services for people with mental health problems in the city. The charity’s services include counselling, supported accommodation, community support, domiciliary support and other day services that are all designed to help people recover from a mental health problem or to manage an ongoing condition.

Jem Morris, Deputy Manager of Supported Accommodation at Cardiff Mind says: “This is the perfect opportunity for people to come along and support a very worthwhile charity whilst having a brilliant time enjoying some fantastic live music and entertainment. Mental ill health touches the lives of so many people, and we hope an event like Cardiff Mind Fest will help break down barriers and will get people motivated to become involved in our work, whether as a client or as a volunteer.”

Bill Cummings, of Godisinthetv zine, is one of the promoters and organisers of Cardiff Mind Fest: “I was approached by a friend (Katie Petersen) who works for Cardiff Mind helping service users with various issues. I am one of three promoters who have grouped together to organise Cardiff Mind Fest 2013. In addition to the 40 acts, there will be information stalls that will showcase local mental health services. Cardiff Mind, Journeys, Making Minds, Time To Change Wales, National Centre for Mental Health, Depressed Cake Shop Cymru and Talk Over Tea are all taking stalls in order to raise awareness of mental health issues in South Wales, to tackle stigma and raise money for Cardiff Mind and the exceptional work they do for people who suffer from mental illness.

I have personally suffered with mental health issues for over ten years, so it is also a subject close to my heart. I think it’s vital we promote wellbeing through creativity, and highlight the therapeutic services in the voluntary sector, available to those who have problems and to tackle stigma surrounding mental health issues. After all, according to statistics, 1 in 4 people will suffer from anxiety, depression or associated problems at some point in their lives.”

Making Minds is a new organisation that has supported Cardiff Mind Fest. Making Minds Co-Chair, Mark Smith says: “We’re all about promoting the role of art and creativity in mental health, so Cardiff Mind Fest is a great opportunity to do just that. Some of the acts involved in the event have direct experience of mental ill health, so they are passionate about the cause. Music can be a powerful vehicle when it comes to delivering important messages and we’re sure some of the performances will help to achieve that. We hope Cardiff Mind Fest will pave the way for an annual event in Wales, where art and creativity, in all its forms, can increase understanding and awareness of mental health.”

Full details of Cardiff Mind Fest can be found online at There is also a Cardiff Mind Fest page on Facebook and you can also follow @CardiffMindFest on Twitter.

Advance tickets can be purchased on the website, from Spillers Records in Cardiff and Diverse Records in Newport. Advance weekend tickets are just £10, with day tickets £6. On the day, weekend tickets will be £14 and day tickets will be £8.

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