Britain Get Talking returns for Christmas

ITV and STV’s groundbreaking mental health initiative, Britain Get Talking, returns to screens with a festive, star-studded Christmas advert.

The promo is to remind viewers of ITV (England, Wales, Channel Islands), STV (Scotland) and UTV (Northern Ireland) of the importance of listening to loved ones this Christmas. Following a challenging year as the Coronavirus crisis continues, the broadcaster has once again partnered with YoungMinds, Mind and SAMH in this next iteration of Britain Get Talking. 

“When we’re all so busy at Christmas, it can be easy to forget what’s really important: checking in with the ones you love and truly listening to how they’re doing. We’re delighted to make a Christmas campaign with a difference, reminding people to give the generous gift of listening this Christmas. After the last couple of years, we could all use an ear.” – Susie Braun, Director of Social Purpose, ITV

The film gives a tongue-in-cheek look at a day in the life of a make-up artist at ITV, following her day as a host of famous faces grace her make-up chair and vent hilariously about the trials and tribulations of the past couple of years – the celebrities also tap into the mood of the nation, all hoping for a proper Christmas this time around. After a long day of listening to how others are doing, our make-up artist is finally asked about her day, reminding audiences of the importance of checking in with one another and ensuring we all feel heard.

“Following what has been a hugely challenging year for many young people, we hope the Britain Get Talking message encourages people to listen to each other this Christmas. Young people tell us that they can feel under huge pressure to look like they’re having the ‘perfect’ Christmas, bottling up struggles such as low mood or concerns about food and body image.

“Christmas gives people the opportunity to spend more time together so if you sense a young person in your life is struggling, showing that you’re there for them could help them to take the first step towards discussing their mental health.” – Emma Thomas, YoungMinds’ Chief Executive

Celebrities include Joel Dommett, Emily Atack, Lorraine Kelly, Phillip Schofield, Charlene White, Helen Worth, Scarlett Moffatt, Fleur East, Kevin Mathurin, Emile John and Toby Aromolaran deliver humorous, satirical moans about everything from Zoom fatigue to panic buying petrol.

“Christmas can be a hard time of year for many of us. Money worries, feeling isolated and missing loved ones we’ve lost can all contribute to difficult feelings over the festive period. We’re thrilled to be a part of this campaign, which encourages us all to take the time to check in with our loved ones this Christmas. Listening without judging is one of the most important things we can do to start open and supportive conversations about mental health.” – Paul Farmer, Chief Executive at Mind

Listening has been proven to reduce stress and anxiety levels, and is particularly important in helping others to open up about their problems. A recent survey conducted by ITV revealed 45% struggle to open up about their problems because they’re worried they’ll be judged. Over 1 in 10 young people don’t open up about their problems at Christmas because they’re worried they won’t be listened to.

The campaign and initiative, developed by Uncommon Creative Studio, reminds viewers to lend an ear as they catch up with their friends and family this Christmas. The film, shot by Motherland Emmy nominated and BAFTA-winning director Simon Hynd, will premiere after ‘I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!’ at 10 pm on ITV this Wednesday 1st December with a special introduction from Britain Get Talking supporters Ant and Dec.

The campaign website, itv.com/BritainGetTalking hosts tips on listening, alongside information on sources of support for viewers who can’t rely on the listening skills of family and friends. Britain Get Talking was originally launched in October 2019 as part of ITV’s wider Better Health commitment to encouraging 10 million people to take action to look after their mental or physical health. Since it launched, it has encouraged the UK public to take over 56 million actions to support their mental wellbeing.

“The festive period can bring many things to the surface – good and bad. We’re very proud to continue our work supporting the UK’s most recognised mental health campaign – Britain Get Talking. In this new film we wanted to disrupt the Christmas conversation with a powerful reminder to check in and listen to one another.” – Lucy Jameson, Co-founder, Uncommon

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