SilverCloud® by Amwell® teams up with local artists to create awareness of mental health supports across Ireland.
- Ireland has one of the highest rates of mental health illness in Europe.
- 42% of Irish adults have a mental health disorder1
- 55% of women and 40% of men, aged between 20 and 22, were classified as depressed, a result of the pandemic.2
- The pandemic has triggered a 25% increase in prevalence of anxiety and depression worldwide3
- Simon Community Dublin reported mental health waitlists as being up 68% for mental health support
- Mental health problems cost the Irish economy more than €8.2 billion a year.4
Wednesday, 1st March 2023 - Reflecting Ireland’s artistic culture and community, three Irish street artists have painted murals depicting their artistic interpretation of mental wellbeing in Dublin, Cork and Galway. The art aims to brighten the streets and acts as a creative reminder to passers-by that mental health support is available via the SilverCloud® digital mental health platform.
SilverCloud® by Amwell® is a clinically proven digital mental health and wellbeing platform, providing the HSE-funded national Guided Digital Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) service. It is available nationwide to individuals free of charge with referral from Ireland-based GPs, Primary Care Psychologists, Counselling in Primary Care, Jigsaw, and select health insurers and universities.
The aim of the installations is to raise awareness of the services in Ireland and to destigmatise the barriers surrounding accessing mental health care using positive messages through the medium of street art. The three locations of the artwork (Dublin, Galway and Cork) reflect the top referring counties, with GPs and therapists utilising the evidence-based mental health programmes for their patients; more than 10,000 people in Ireland have already been referred to the platform.
Alison Tyrrell, Head of Marketing at Amwell, reflects on the inspiration behind the installation: “We are passionate about supporting greater access to mental health support in Ireland. The SilverCloud® platform was founded and developed in Dublin, so it fills us with pride to bring art installations here and drive awareness of free mental health tools. Ireland is rich with artistic history and self-expression; it was important for us to reflect this culture within our efforts. The art itself communicates a message of hope to highlight the support that’s available to people across the country via the platform.“
The aim of digital mental health solutions – such as the SilverCloud® platform – is to provide an ease of access and use for mental health supports nationwide. The digital platform is not designed to replace therapy, rather to address a need for better and faster access to mental health support; it can be used whilst you await a therapy session, used in-between sessions or used to maintain recovery after therapy.
This awareness campaign aims to contribute to the community with positive mental health messages, ‘to help remind us to prioritise our mental wellness every day, not only when things get tough’. With street art as the medium for this message, Amwell also is giving back to the community with beautiful mural artworks to brighten up neighbourhoods.
The artistic project is in collaboration with creative arts agency The Walls Project (the company behind the hugely successful Waterford Walls), who commissioned artists to brighten hoardings and abandoned walls.
The Walls Project is catering for talent acquisition and location sourcing. The team is providing site management and art supplies for the artists to complete their work. Holly Pereira, Vanessa Power (Signs of Power) and ADW have picked up their brushes to transform empty and forgotten walls and hoarding. Their murals will help encourage more people to proactively think about caring for their mental health and request supports, such as the SilverCloud programmes, when they need it.
John O Connell, Executive Director of The Walls Project, is looking forward to promoting such an important message, “Mental wellbeing is a quiet conversation in Ireland, and many people are afraid to discuss something very human and important. We hope that by sharing a message through art, people will take note of what’s going on and that help is available. We thank BAM Ireland and Ronan Group for their collaboration with us during our pursuit of suitable wall locations. Art can be inspiring and enriching, and we hope that these murals in prominent locations will have a big positive impact for passers-by and their areas.”
Vanessa Power, who uses Signs of Power as her street artist name expresses her excitement to be working on this project, “I’m thrilled to be part of this SilverCloud® project as I think it’s so important to talk about mental health and get help when it’s needed. I hope these murals will encourage people to reach out for help instead of suffering in silence. Admitting we are struggling and that we need help is a sign of strength not weakness. So, I believe these bold, positive, mental wellbeing messages out in the streets will reassure people it’s ok to ask for help.” Adding to the conversation ADW mentions, “Mental health awareness is a subject very close to my heart, and I think street art has the power to create a unique energy that connects and make a positive impact to people's lives.”
Work commenced on Monday 27th February and continued through to Sunday 5th March. The addition of a QR code at each artwork directs people as needed to find out how they can gain access to SilverCloud® services. The walls are located at (link to artist included):
Tara Street, Dublin
Sullivan’s Quay, Cork
Headford Road x Dyke Road, Galway
Viewers can find updates on the process at SilverCloud® and The Walls Projects’ social media and on their landing page. More on how to gain access to SilverCloud programmes can be found here: www.silvercloudhealth.com/uk/get-access-to-silvercloud-programmes
- The first comprehensive assessment of the occurrence of multiple mental health disorders and attempted suicide in the Irish State by academics from Maynooth University, National College of Ireland and Trinity College Dublin.
- ESRI Report, June 2022
- WHO: Covid-19 pandemic tiggers 25% increase in prevalence of anxiety and depression worldwide
- Irish Examiner: Mental health issues cost economy over €8 million a year