Letters - 24 November 2023

From Mental health to Peace

Mental health

The trustees of the Quaker Mental Health Fund have asked me to say how pleased they were to see the piece by Mary Woodward (‘Taking care’) in your 3 November issue.
It sounds as though Mary’s experience, and that of the friend she told about our grants, was as good as we could have hoped for.

As the Quaker charity focused on grants to promote and protect mental health, we also fund Quaker-led projects where more people, and not only Quakers, can be supported.
Quaker Voices on Mental Health (now a Quaker Recognised Body in its own right) is such a recipient of grants.

Our new website is nearly ready, so it will soon be possible to apply for grants for individuals and for projects by filling in forms online which we hope will streamline the process for applicants and those who help others to make an application.

We reiterate Mary’s words: ‘Do please bear in mind that help exists. It’s not a sign of weakness to ask for it. You don’t have to suffer alone.’

Alison Hay
Clerk to the Quaker Mental Health Fund

White poppies

White and red wreaths were laid at our local peace statue, in the memorial gardens.

Solidarity was expressed with people touched by war, the UK, Ukraine, Israel, Palestine and elsewhere.

Common cause was made with the traditional services for veterans and those marching for a ceasefire in Gaza, as a necessary but insufficient step towards a lasting just peace. All were acting for peace, in their own way.

Wearing a white poppy represents three things: remembrance of all those who’ve died; rejection of war as a means of solving problems; and ‘Never again’, for anyone.

‘Never again’ is particularly poignant as thousands are being killed in Gaza, and millions around the world are lobbying, marching, and protesting to stop the slaughter.

Those millions have realised that they cannot stand by and do nothing while hospitals are bombed, cities are turned to rubble, and innocent Palestinians and Israelis are murdered.

Two mutually-traumatised populations in a cycle of revenge and more revenge are clearly not safe, and will not be until the cycle of violence is ended.

Lesley Grahame

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