A Leicester charity is set to launch a new service supporting men with their mental health thanks to a £2,000 donation from the Wesleyan Foundation.

The grant will help The Centre Project launch The Men’s Group, a drop-in session which will provide a safe space to support men suffering with depression and anxiety.

The Men’s Group forms part of the Centre Project’s wider efforts to reduce loneliness among vulnerable and socially isolated people in Leicester.

Eric Waweru, Chief Executive of The Centre Project, said:

“Loneliness, poverty and homelessness are the main reoccurring problems facing the men that come to us for support. Now that we are able to offer a dedicated session allowing men to talk openly about their difficulties we are hoping to have a positive impact on the growing number of men who are suffering in silence in Leicester.”


“Our members have been asking for a male-only space. Many say that sitting alone at home makes them depressed, they wanted a space to speak and listen.


“The main problems men face in this area are loneliness, poverty, mental health issues and homelessness. We are hoping this group will help and support people dealing with mental health difficulties allowing them to talk openly about these issues. So far the sessions have been very positively received.”

The Men’s Group will meet fortnightly on Thursday evenings, starting in December, at The Centre Project building in Leicester’s town centre.

The Centre Project provides support to socially isolated people suffering from mental health problems. The charity aims to help reduce isolation and loneliness by providing practical support and help in establishing and maintaining social support networks.

David Wigginton, a member of the group, said:

“I have been coming to The Centre Project for a long time. Loneliness is a big problem, I cannot stop at home, it will drive me mad, so I have attended all four men sessions so far.


“I am 70 and it is good to join in with people of all ages and share our experiences. They can learn from me and I learn from them.


“So far, it’s been great meeting new people and talking about issues that I usually would not talk about, not to mention volunteering and sharing meals after the sessions!”

The Wesleyan Foundation was launched in June 2017 by specialist financial services mutual Wesleyan and is managed by the Heart of England Community Foundation. The Foundation has already provided more than £1 million in funding to over 200 charities, community groups and social enterprises around the country.

Tina Costello, CEO of the Heart of England Community Foundation said:

“It’s brilliant to be able to support a project that is fighting male mental health issues. Suicide rates in males compared to females is exceptionally high and I’m sure this group will have a positive impact on people’s lives.”