A mental health organisation has kept it's members connected during lockdown and is now looking for more people to get involved digitally.

Headspace Bolton usually run comedy and performance workshops in the Octagon Theatre, however they have had to take their classes online.

Life in lockdown has been difficult for all of us, but for those facing mental health challenges it's been even tougher.

Headspace have provided vital support for their members during this time through their virtual sessions.

Co-founder of Headspace Bolton Ginny Allende said: "We started running online sessions before lockdown was announced as many of our members had self-isolated anyway, we were quite prepared.

"A lot of what our members tell us is that we provide a space which doesn't focus on mental health, it's a chance for them to do something different.

"During lockdown there was a lot of talk of what's good for our mental health, but for those facing these challenges they actually don't want to talk about mental health at all.

"Everyone has good and bad days, but we help give our members goals that they can work towards; it's about having a couple of hours a week to focus on what they can do rather than what they can't.

"Headspace welcomes everyone; we have members with bipolar disorder, post traumatic stress disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder, among others.

"The main thing is that they are interested in performing, comedy and musical theatre.

"We've actually increased our sessions and we would like to attract more people, we want to involve as many people as possible.

"It can be daunting to join in because it feels more distant, but we do offer phone calls with people before they join so they can see if it's for them.

"It works through self-referral, we want people to do this because they're interested in it."

Funding for Headspace comes from the Health Lottery which is distributed by the People's Health Trust.

Nicola Brian, director of communications, evaluation and learning at People’s Health Trust, said: "Mental health challenges are being exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown and distancing measures.

"It’s a sad reality that people are really struggling at the moment, and local projects like Headspace Bolton are providing a real lifeline.

"Maintaining social connections while physically distancing is so important and we can’t thank them enough."