Comic Relief: Social enterprise aids mental health with stand-up comedy

Tash Alexander, founder of Head Held High

Tash Alexander, founder of Head Held High - Credit: Head Held High

Comic Relief money has enabled a north London social enterprise to use stand-up comedy to help people's mental health.

Head Held High's Stand up for Yourself consists of six weekly workshops with adults who have been in contact with the charity Mind.

It helps participants find the humour in life whilst focusing on finding direction and building confidence.

Director and found Tash Alexander, who lives in Muswell Hill, said: “We analyse how comedians communicate which teaches us how to develop everyday life skills. 

“At the end of the programme, participants present a five-minute stand-up comedy routine in front of a live audience. Participants learn how to unlock creativity, overcome anxiety and present with style and self-belief.


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"We’ve worked with a range of groups including disengaged young people lacking in motivation and direction, some displaying negative behaviour or on the verge of exclusion from school."  

The Islington-based social enterprise, founded in 2013, has worked with ex-offenders and the long term unemployed.  

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"Outcomes have exceeded our expectations," said Tash. "After completing the course we’ve seen individuals return to education, set up their own businesses, have increased conviction in their own ability to move forward in a positive way.  

"Social interaction within the group gives many participants a real sense of achievement.”

Tash Alexander, founder of Head Held High

Tash Alexander, founder of Head Held High - Credit: Head Held High

Visit www.headheldhigh.org.uk

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