What is Heads Together? The mental health charity that's backing Mind Over Marathon

By: Chris Johnson
April 20, 2017

THE Royal Princes have hit the headlines this month as they’ve finally found the strength to open up about the struggles they faced following their mother’s death.

And that’s not all, they’ve also joined the Duchess of Cambridge in a Heads Together campaign that’s working to dispel the stigma which surrounds mental health.

PA:Press Association

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Price Harry have released 10 films as part of their Heads Together campaign

So what is Heads Together and why is the cause of the charity so important to the royal Princes?

What is Heads Together?

Heads Together is a mental health campaign led by The Royal Foundation in partnership with YoungMinds and seven other charities.

It aims to challenge mental health stigma and change how it is perceived.

It was made the 2017 Virgin Money London Marathon Charity of the Year and

Heads Together commissioned a YouGov poll which found nearly half (46 per cent) of 5,003 adults, questioned in February, have talked recently about mental health, with a quarter chatting about their own psychological problems.

Since April 2016 the royals have been heavily involved in the campaign.

PA:Press Association

In one of the films Ruby Wax and her husband, Ed Bye, discuss her mental illness

What do Prince William, Kate Middleton and Prince Harry do for Heads Together?

The trio have been part of the campaign to work against the negative attitudes to talking about mental health.

They commissioned ten films of celebrities talking about their problems and the times when talking about it made a huge difference.

The royals said: “Since we launched Heads Together last May, we have seen time and time again that shattering stigma on mental health starts with simple conversations.

“When you realise that mental health problems affect your friends, neighbours, children and spouses, the walls of judgment and prejudice around these issues begin to fall.

“And we all know that you cannot resolve a mental health issue by staying silent. Attitudes to mental health are at a tipping point.

“We hope these films show people how simple conversations can change the direction of an entire life.”

Prince Harry pips William and Kate to the line in race for Heads Together

After praising the pop singer for speaking out about mental health, the Duke of Cambridge then revealed why he decided to embark on the Heads Together project.

He said: “Harry, Katherine and I really felt this was such an important area that throughout all of our charitable work whether it was veterans, homelessness, addiction, most of it seemed to stem back to mental health awareness.”

Prince William has FaceTime call with Lady GaGa about mental health for Heads Together

How else have Prince Harry and Prince William spoken out about mental health issues?

.

After opening-up about his traumatic ordeal, the Prince disclosed that he sought therapy and took up boxing to combat his frustration.

He also admitted that

PA:Press Association

Princess Diana with a young Prince Harry

Following his brother's brave admission, 

after Diana's heart-breaking death.

And another correspondent reported that the

Prince William has also revealed that

The dad-of-two said: “I have my reasons for getting involved with mental health with what happened with my mum when I was younger. I still feel the shock within me.”

Which other celebrities are involved in the Heads Together campaign?

Alastair Campbell talks with Fiona Millar about his breakdown for Heads Together

Ruby Wax, Alastair Campbell, Mark Austin, Freddie Flintoff and Stephen Manderson - better known as Professor Green - in the films.

Alongside the well known faces are two paramedics based in Blackpool.

The films feature people from all walks of life as they talk about their mental health.

In many of the films they are speaking with the person they first opened up to as part of a life changing conversation.

Stephen said of his pivotal moment: "That conversation changed everything, because from that point everything was out in the open and I was able to talk to my friends about it."

PA:Press Association

Freddie Flintoff (left) and Stephen Manderson who are among the stars talking about their mental health battles

What is Mind Over Marathon?

As the runners get ready to take on the this weekend, a new show is set to follow a group as they get ready to undertake this enormous feat.

The programme follows a group of 10 unlikely runners, living with different mental health issues, who are half-way through their training for the ultimate test of mind over matter.

Presenter is on a personal mission to get the runners across the Marathon finishing line, and is leading a team of running experts, nutritionists and psychiatrists.

Tune in on Thursday April 20 at 9pm or catch up with it on BBC's iPlayer.

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