St Albans mental health charity reveals future plans

Stacey Turner of It's OK To Say updates us on her charity plans.

Stacey Turner of It's OK To Say updates us on her charity plans. - Credit: Stacey Turner

A St Albans mental health awareness charity is promising big things in the coming months.

It's OK To Say was set up by Stacey Turner with a team of professionals to motivate people to talk, listen and reach out for help.

It offers therapeutic services, support groups, workshops and more for all ages, and aims to get people to where they need to be on their journey to mental wellbeing as quickly as possible.

Stacey said: “Allow me to first apologise for the radio silence, sometimes all the little things roll into a huge thing and before you know it, time has whizzed by!

“We now have celebrity patrons! St Albans very own panto star, Bob Golding joined us a couple of months ago and it’s been wonderful. He’s a real asset and offers a lot of comfort.

"He also brought in support from Phil Gallagher - CBeebies Mister Maker - Gareth Gates, Rita Simons and more.

“Sky Sports F1 Commentator, David Croft (Crofty) came on board after we met in 2018. He
contributes motivating messages on key weeks to help remind people that mental health is part of
your everyday.

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“Christo Tofalli of Ye Olde Fighting Cocks also joined the It’s OK To Say family and is currently helping to raise awareness and contribute to our anti-bullying campaign about to launch in September.

"We are all very passionate about this project, as it gives voice to the bullied as well as rising to an ongoing problem, often swept under the carpet! Our intention is to achieve change at county level, and while we know this is going to be hard, so is coping with being bullied! It’s time we changed things!”

Stacey has resumed training for her postponed swim of the English Channel with a mix of walking and jogging with dog Teddy or building her strength and swimming at Westminster Lodge.

Together with the leisure centre, she has launched Facebook Live chats every Thursday at 3pm, chatting all things mental health, anxiety, well-being, Covid plus returning to exercise.

Stacey added: “I find it lovely that when I walk through town and people stop and say hello, they mention
It’s Ok To Say, it’s like an affirmation of our work.

"There’s a lot that goes on behind the scenes nobody
sees due to confidentiality.

“Our aim is to have a centre, a space free to use for everyone with access to support. Funding is
sparse, but we’re trying.

"We continue to work hard behind the scenes, and what’s lovely is that we are a family with big hearts supporting those who reach out to us. We recently begun work with a young person who has been in custody as well as supporting those impacted by loss, everyday stresses, Covid and struggling with aspects of life.

“I am always blown away by the support and generosity we receive, thank you to our supporters and
for always being there. No matter your age, background, the issue, we’re here for you!”