Arlo Parks has called for more mental health support for vulnerable and marginalised groups.

The 2021 Mercury Prize-winner - whose debut album 'Collapsed in Sunbeams' details her battles with depression and anxiety - has responded to a report issued by UNICEF, entitled The State of the World’s Children 2021, which highlights the grim reality of how much the global pandemic has impacted on a generation's mental health.

The 'Black Dog' singer - who named the song after the late former British Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill's name for depression - commented: “I have lost friends to mental illness and watched them drown in an inky pit of darkness.

“I have also seen friends blossom and navigate their way towards the light with professional help and a loving, attentive support system.

“A mind filled with shame cannot grow and that is why I believe that deconstructing stigma, making mental health support accessible and building structures to support people, in particular vulnerable and marginalised groups, is essential. Queerness, in particular, should not mean guilt, it should not mean other.

“We must check up on each other, stand up for each other and banish shame from our vocabulary.”

Meanwhile, the 21-year-old singer - who came out as bisexual when she was 17 - previously admitted she never would have imagined her honest lyrics would be shared with the world, as penning songs was something she did for her own fulfilment.

She said: "For me, it comes really naturally because I spent a lot of time just writing songs for myself and not expecting anyone to hear them.

"I find it really hard to do fiction, it's very much real.

"All of the artists I like, such as Elliott Smith and Phoebe Bridgers, do have this vulnerability.

And that vulnerability is what makes people feel comfortable and seen in your music.

"Of course there is always going to be nerves when you are putting out something that you care about but it means you are pushing the boundary a bit.

"You are on the fringe of your comfort zone. I think that's healthy, I like that."