Charity partners and a local coffee supplier have created a coffee shop dedicated to providing a safe space for information and support on mental health.
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Chicago’s new coffee shop, Sip of Hope, works explicitly to prevent suicide. The new space provides traditional seating and a clearly marked area for information and resources. The entire shop is dedicated to promoting positive mental health and supporting those in difficulty. For example, their whole bean coffee bags are printed with mental health resources, in addition to their shop resource wall. The founders of the shop are clear that it is a bridge between service users and support. The team behind the idea wants to make discussions about mental health common, supportive and completely without stigma. Additionally, all profits from the business go directly to the charity.
Hope For The Day is a suicide prevention charity that works through outreach and education. Dark Matter Coffee provides the beans for the shop and has worked with the charity for a number of years. Furthermore, all baristas in the shop are trained in Mental Health First Aid. The shop’s motto is “It’s ok to not be ok.” Sip of Hope is a social enterprise and is owned by Hope For The Day. The charity encourages locals to get in touch with ideas for outreach at the coffee shop.
The rise in numbers of discussions about mental health is encouraging. Hope For The Day says that the number one obstacle to suicide prevention is silence. A London-based startup developed a gaming platform which hopes to combat this and promote positive mental health in young people. The company teaches resilience through a fantasy card battling game that uses swords, spells and stress control. Similarly, in Canada, a public health campaign is using artificial intelligence to examine the expressed thoughts and behaviors of social media users to help allocate care. How else can inclusion help to support a public health campaign and message?