Giving sufferers Hope

PUBLISHED: 14:10 22 February 2007 | UPDATED: 10:12 31 May 2010

Andy West, left, and minister Simon Mattholie

Andy West, left, and minister Simon Mattholie

AN INFORMATION day at Saffron Walden Baptist Church gave help to people suffering from depression last Saturday. Hope in Dark Places was attended by more than 120 people and provided factual information and personal insights to sufferers of the illness an

AN INFORMATION day at Saffron Walden Baptist Church gave help to people suffering from depression last Saturday.

Hope in Dark Places was attended by more than 120 people and provided factual information and personal insights to sufferers of the illness and their carers.

Church minister Simon Mattholie said the event opened up what is frequently seen as a taboo subject.

"Hope in Dark Places provided a much needed forum where people could talk about their own journey through depression," he said.

"The most powerful part of the day was people sharing their own stories. This illness is silently, but nevertheless destructively, impacting our community with many more people suffering from depressive illnesses than most imagine."

Speaker and former president of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, Andrew Sims said: "Depression is one of the four major health problems in the world, but it is usually treatable. There is life after depression."

Author Pam Norman gave a personal account of her own struggle with the illness.

"Over 120 people packed the church because they wanted to understand depression better and it was a good demonstration of the great need that exists in this area of mental illness," she said.

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