50 years of being there ……..

Back May 21st, 2020

This year Anxiety UK is proud to be celebrating its 50th year of operation and of providing high quality and accessible support for individuals experiencing anxiety, stress, anxiety based depression, phobias and other anxiety related conditions.

In 1970, the charity’s founders, Katharine and Harold Fisher established The Phobics’ Society from their home in Chorlton, Manchester as a direct result of Katharine’s personal experience of agoraphobia and with the sole aim of getting support in place for others that were similarly affected.  At that time, anxiety was not the common phenomenon that it is today and it was difficult for those with anxiety disorders to get timely access to help aside from a prescription for tranquillisers which was the treatment of choice at that time.

By 1995, the Phobics’ Society had become a national initiative and so the charity’s name was changed to the National Phobics’ Society in recognition of the charity’s countrywide support offer.  In 2008, a further rebrand to Anxiety UK took place; reflecting the wide range of anxiety disorders that the charity focusses on.

Over the years, there have been many notable milestone achievements in the charity’s history and which have led to the transformation of many thousands of lives over the years as the organisation’s support offer continues to grow.

Notably, in 1997 the charity’s therapy service was established, some 10 years or more before the government’s Improving Access to Psychological Therapy – IAPT scheme was introduced to support those with common mental health difficulties.  Through this initiative, Anxiety UK made clinical hypnotherapy accessible and affordable to those affected by anxiety as well as other psychotherapy modalities including counselling and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).  In 2019 over 1,200 people accessed therapy through Anxiety UK with our pool of more than 350 Anxiety UK Approved Therapists.

As well as providing access to talking therapy support, Anxiety UK has always operated a national helpline service which over the years has remained a key service provided by the charity offering a listening ear and importantly information and advice on all things ‘anxiety’.  In 2000 over 40,000 calls were made to the helpline; that’s an average of 50 calls a day.  The charity’s helpline services continue to form a key component of Anxiety UK’s overall support offer and since the mid 2008 have included digital support channels such as live chat/instant messaging, email and text support.

In recognition of the woeful levels of research undertaken on anxiety in stark contrast to the prevalence rates of such conditions, in 2015 we launched the ‘Katharine and Harold  Anxiety Research Fund’ through which a small pot of funding is given each year to support research into anxiety.  This project is something that the charity is particularly proud of and we are keen to see the fund allowance grow year on year.

In our more recent history, we moved into new premises in Old Trafford – Nunes House, named after Glenmore Nunes, a key individual in the charity’s history who grew the charity from a small organisation that ran from Glenmore’s home into the thriving charity that it is today.

As we look back at the history of Anxiety UK, we are also looking forward to what the future may bring and so throughout our 50th year we will be launching various initiatives and new services to celebrate our anniversary and to continue to provide support for those who need us.


How you can get involved!

Are you a business, organisation or firm looking to support Anxiety UK?

Why not become a member of our 50/50/50 Club!

50 firms – 50 fundraisers – 50 friends

We’re looking for 50 fantastic firms to support us in our 50th year by making a donation of £500 (medium to large organisations) or £50 (small, micro and start-up businesses). Every firm that becomes part of our 50/50/50 Club will receive a mention to over 131K+ of our twitter followers and via our other social media channels as well as being listed on a dedicated page on our website; designed to celebrate the support you and others have given to Anxiety UK. To find out more and how to donate, please contact ops@anxietyuk.org.uk or visit here.

Thank you to all of our supporters to date – see who they are here

50 fantastic fundraisers

If you are an individual, group or organisation who would like to hold a fundraising event for our 50th year or indeed participate in a fundraising event of any kind, why not apply to become one of our Anxiety UK 50 fantastic fundraisers?  We are looking for each fundraiser to pledge to raise a minimum of £1000.  All funds raised will be used to fund research into anxiety via our Katharine and Harold Fisher Anxiety Research Fund. Fundraising events to consider include a bake sale, holding a coffee morning with friends, doing a run, cycle or walk or any other event you can put your mind to! As one of our 50 fantastic fundraisers you will receive an exclusive fundraising pack worth £25.00, filled with Anxiety UK merchandise and a limited edition fundraiser’s t-shirt! For more information on how to get involved, please contact admin@anxietyuk.org.uk

Friends of Anxiety UK (FAUK)

If you feel passionately about the work that we do at Anxiety UK, why not and become a ‘Friend of Anxiety UK – FAUK’?  In return, you will receive an exclusive monthly newsletter packed with information about the latest developments at the charity and how we are working hard to support others! Click here to start your journey in becoming a Friend of Anxiety UK.

If you don’t fancy getting involved in any of the ways that we’ve talked about so far, you can always support our work by making a donation – please click here.

And very finally, we absolutely could not deliver the support that we provide, invest in the latest research or develop cutting edge services without the backing of our Friends, followers and members and so may we take this opportunity in our 50th year, to say a big THANK YOU to you all.

Let’s continue to pull together to make the despair caused by anxiety, a thing of the past.

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