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Stagecoach gets on board with Highland charity Mikeysline to support mental health in seniors

By Gregor White

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Engineering director and operations director with Stagecoach North Scotland Dave Simpson and Alex Flanagan with Emily Stokes of Mikeysline.
Engineering director and operations director with Stagecoach North Scotland Dave Simpson and Alex Flanagan with Emily Stokes of Mikeysline.

Stagecoach has shown its support to Highland mental health and suicide prevention charity Mikeysline with two new advertisements to be displayed across the back of its buses.

Alongside a design championing the charity’s Bee the Change campaign, Stagecoach has also taken the opportunity to remind its senior travellers that support is always available.

Mikeysline chief executive Emily Stokes, said: “Stagecoach has long been a big supporter of Mikeysline, and we’re incredibly proud to have them join us in raising awareness to those in our community that can often be forgotten.

“The World Health Organisation shared that approximately 14 per cent of adults aged 60 and over live with a mental disorder, and that loneliness and social isolation are key factors in causing this.

“At Mikeysline, we strive to support all ages, young and old, but it is often those in the older age bracket that are left unaware of the services and support available to them.

Mikeysline on the move in Inverness city centre

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“In this digital age, where much of what we do is online, those who are unable to access this type of content are often at a disadvantage. That’s why it is important to find alternative ways to share our message more widely.”

Stagecoach's daily journeys throughout the north of Scotland will be instrumental in extending Mikeysline's reach and delivering its message of hope to more communities and individuals in need.

David Beaton, managing director of Stagecoach North Scotland, said: “Our business is centred on connecting people to places, and our latest partnership with Mikeysline is no different – we’re connecting people to the support and services they may need.

“We’ve worked with Mikeysline from the very beginning of its journey and we’re delighted to continue doing so. It’s fantastic to see how the charity has grown and flourished in its years and we look forward to supporting the team more in the future.”

Since 2015, Mikeysline has offered confidential, non-judgemental support to people of all ages dealing with mental health issues, emotional distress or thoughts of suicide in the Highlands, Islands and Moray.

It does this via a text line service at 07786 207755; WhatsApp at 01463 729000 and via its website; and live chat and Messenger via its website.

A call back service is also provided, for those who cannot access the organisation’s meeting places - nown as Hives - but would like to talk to someone rather than use text-based or face to face support.

The charity also produces a popular podcast, Speaking of Suicide; provides support for businesses; works closely with teachers and pupils in schools across the north of Scotland; and offers face-to-face support in Hives in Inverness, Alness, Nairn, Tain, Balintore, Portmahomack and Thurso. Here, people can engage in one-to-one support, or at some venues join in group sessions for adults, men, families and school communities.

For more information about the charity, visit www.mikeysline.co.uk – or find Mikeysline on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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