SOME of the most creative businesses in Dorset will come together today in an effort to end the stigma attached to mental health problems in the workplace.

Bournemouth is hosting a fringe event for Do It Day, an international effort by the marketing and media publication The Drum.

The local event has been put together by Dan Willis of Why Digital, who has spoken about his own experience of bipolar disorder.

He has invited some of the town’s key creative and digital businesses to the event, which is backed by mental health charity Dorset Mind.

“It’s a day where numerous companies, agencies and organisations leave their egos at the door, leave their politics at the door and for one day they look to create a concept which is then implemented afterwards,” he said.

Around 30 people will be split into teams to create and pitch an idea, which could take any form, from a marketing activity to a product such as an app.

“We’ve got some incredible partnerships, with Silicon South, Createful, Media Lounge and lots of agencies,” he said.

The fringe event efforts will be entered into the Marketing Can Cahnge the World Awards.

Mr Willis said: “We’re helping to make Bournemouth work together. We will still be entering these enormous, international awards, but as a Bournemouth collective.”

Mr Willis said his bipolar could make him highly energetic and focused for days on end. He hoped to change the perception of mental health, emphasising “the super powers that people with mental health have, rather than seeing looking at it as a disability”.

He said: “By changing that perception, hopefully people will be able to understand that it’s not all about equality in the workplace, it’s also about how we can celebrate those people that have mental health and those skill sets they can provide.

“Stress in the workplace and mental health in the workplace still cost the economy hundreds of millions every year. If we start trusting our staff and empowering them to be honest with us and have a mental health day when they need it, it will only benefit their organisation when they’re able to work.”

He said the least participants would achieve would be to go back to their own workplaces with more understanding.

“We’re looking to enlist Dorset as a flagship for people who want to destigmatise mental health, who believe in challenging the perception that it has in society – and if we can do that, then hopefully other areas of the country will be able to follow suit.”