Humza Yousaf unveils £30m for community mental health support

The extra funding takes the total for community-based support to about £130m since 2020.

Humza Yousaf has unveiled an additional £30m to help Scots improve their mental health.

The Communities Mental Health and Wellbeing Fund for adults, and the Children and Young People’s Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Supports, were each awarded £15m for 2024-25.

The First Minister, who has previously shared his own mental health struggles, welcomed the funding during a visit to Edinburgh Community Performing Arts re-connect project which supports those aged 65-plus with conditions including dementia and Parkinson’s.

He said: “On becoming First Minister I reiterated my personal commitment to supporting those living with mental health challenges.

“We know how important it is for our society to have access to mental health and wellbeing support.

“That is why my Government is committed to ensuring we fund vital services in our health service and in community settings to ensure we try, as much as possible, to provide a national network of community support for adults, children and young people.

“This further £30m will fund community based projects which are focused on prevention and early intervention, and this is a significant step forward in supporting people’s mental health and wellbeing by making sure they can easily access the help they need, when and where they need it.”

He said the latest funding takes the total investment in community-based mental health to more than £130m since 2020.

The funding is part of the 2024-25 budget allocation for mental health, with an excess of £1.3m being spent on total for mental health.

The fund for adults was launched in 2021 and helps community groups support adults to tackle social isolation, loneliness and mental health inequalities.

About 3,300 grants have been made to community organisations delivering mental health support within the scheme’s first two years, the Scottish Government said.

Meanwhile, the children’s support began in 2020 to help with the mental health impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and its restrictions.

However, now it helps those aged between five and 24 receive mentoring, arts-based therapies and whole-family support and counselling.

More than 58,000 children, young people and their families are thought to have accessed the services available through the fund.

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