HUG is a network of people with experience of mental health problems.

Our main aim is to improve the way in which we, as users of mental health services, are treated by campaigning to improve the rights, services and treatment of people with mental health problems, and to challenge stigma and discrimination.

Launched in 1996, HUG now has around 350 members and thirteen local branches across the Highlands


HUG believes that people with direct experience of mental health problems have an expertise that cannot be found elsewhere. Collective advocacy can harness this expertise and use it to influence the ways in which services are developed and run, to educate professionals and the public, and to also empower and influence individual members’ lives.


HUG’s work is split into two complimentary projects which work together to meet our aims;

  • Speaking Out (collective advocacy)
  • Communications Project (anti-stigma work).

Speaking Out focuses on consulting our members on a variety of subjects and campaign locally, nationally and internationally about these issues to influence change.

We do this through regular meetings in the thirteen HUG branches in the Highlands, as well as meeting with individual members who may be unable to attend groups.

As part of this work we produce reports that are widely read by professionals and policy makers as well as our members.

The Communications Project aims to reduce stigma and raise awareness and understanding about our lives and experiences, by:

  • Delivering mental health awareness training
  • Working with young people and schools
  • Producing DVDs about our experiences
  • Promoting our work through the media developing promotional materials

We also maintain this website from which all our recent reports and speeches are available as well as our members’ creative work.

HUG map icon

Where We Work

Some links if you think you need immediate support.


Tel: — Email:
small HUG logo