It comes after the results of a survey into mental illness in Scotland were published this week.
The study was carried out by Support in Mind Scotland and Scotland’s Rural College last summer and included respondents from Dumfries and Galloway.
It aimed to find out what it was like living in rural Scotland with mental ill health.
Hundreds of people took part and one of the key messages was that connecting locally is really important, and that ordinary links with people in their community play a key role in helping to overcome stigma, isolation and remoteness.
Connecting people in their communities is something that the new National Rural Mental Health Forum is seeking to do.
Convener Jim Hume said: “The research findings from the rural mental health survey now give us the evidence to help us tackle mental ill health in rural Scotland. We know that one in four Scots suffer mental ill health at some point in their lives, and now we know that tackling mental ill health in rural Scotland has its own challenges.
“The Forum and its members are keen to take action by raising awareness in rural communities and normalising talking about mental ill health.”
To read the full study, go to www.sruc.ac.uk/info/120334/health\_and\_wellbeing