A LIFELINE support group for new mums experiencing mental health issues has been showcasing its valuable work.

Happy Mums has held parent-friendly activities in the Lanes Shopping Centre, Carlisle, with its Wellbeing Week to champion better maternal mental health.

The team prides itself with the ability to offer peer-led support and give mums and dads the chance to meet others who have been in a similar situation.

Finding the support she needed was Sarah Penn, 38, who, after struggling with depression before having her daughter Adelina, started to attend sessions at the foundation during her pregnancy to help find the support she needed.

Sarah, from Dalston, said: “If it wasn’t for Happy Mums I don’t know where I would be.

“After my daughter was born they were my lifeline.

“They help me get the support I needed and as I got worse I was admitted to a mother and baby unit at a psychiatric hospital in the northeast for two months.

“The team continued to support me and played a part in getting me home.”

Happy Mums founder and chief executive Katherine Dalgliesh said: “We want to raise awareness about maternal mental health and give parents a place to go and find non-judgemental support.

“We have been planning this event for about a year and it was just about timing and finding the space we wanted to be in the centre of town and The Lanes seemed like the right place.

“We’re based in Scotby and it can be difficult for people to get to us so coming to town give people the chance to find out we exist and let people know we can arrange transport for them to come to us.”

This week the team has been hosting the wellbeing week to give people who don’t know about it or are unable to get to it the chance to find out what it does.

Katherine said: “About 20 per cent of women will get some kind of maternal mental health problem in pregnancy or up to a year or two after giving birth.

“We know there are lots of women out there who need support and help with that.

“We don’t talk about it enough, it is supposed to be such a joyful time but you can feel guilty for saying you’re struggling. We just want to open up that conversation and make it OK for women to talk about it.

“What we offer is different to what health professionals offer we offer peer-support which is women who have been through some kind maternal mental health problem and can now support someone who is going through it now.”

The Wellbeing Week featured a different activity each day.