Global Health Academy

Mindfulness event wins nationwide competition

A recent public event entitled "Mindfulness for Depression: Theory and Practice" has won first prize in the British Science Association nationwide competition for best branch event.

Fabulous presentations. Very inspirational. Looking forward to hearing more on this subject.


To mark European Year of the Brain (2014) and Mental Health Awareness Week (12th - 18th May) the Global Health Academy in collaboration with Edinburgh Neuroscience and the British Science Association ran a public event On May 14th looking at the range of psychological treatments available for depression, including the use of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT )and other Mindfulness types of therapy, their use and possible benefits.

Depression is surprisingly common, affecting about one in 20 of us at any point in time, and as many as one-half of humanity over the average lifetime. Major life changes and stressors can bring about depression, which we may feel we have little or no control over. People with depression are often unable to see that they do have choices and can bring about change in a variety of ways. Several studies have demonstrated that a variety of psychological methods can be effective in treating the symptoms experienced, reducing the chances they return and may also help prevent a person with mild depression from becoming more severely depressed.

Talks were given by Professor Stephen Lawrie (Head of Psychiatry & Beltane Public Engagement Fellow, Edinburgh University) Dr David Gillanders (Senior Lecturer and Academic Director in Clinical Psychology, Edinburgh University) and Professor Stewart Mercer (Professor of Primary Care Research, Glasgow University & Trustee, Mindfulness Scotland) .


Professor Stephen Lawrie introduced the event giving the first talk looking at depression and its global prevalence, including evidence that current treatments do work.

Dr David Gillanders spoke on Acceptance and Commitments Therapy (ACT) for depression, a form of cognitive behavioural therapy combining mindfulness and behavioural psychology to promote effective living.

The last talk in the event was given by Professor Stewart Mercer, who looked at mindfulness specifically, its origins, benefits and how it works which included a short taster session.