“Laura worked with me for about a year whilst I was using mental health services. It was a really tricky time for me as I guess I was working out who I was beyond someone who had been in and out of hospital with my mental health, and who felt angry about the lack of support and I my friends experienced. She helped me learn how to channel that safely and helped me see that there was real value to what I could contribute. I now provide training and consultancy across the country around youth mental health and run the UK’s only peer led youth mental health service, Hearts & Minds. www.heartsandminds.org.uk What I do now wouldn’t have been possible without the various mentors I’ve had including Laura.”
Beth Ingram, Hearts & Minds
“Helping to prepare young people to use their voices to get across their opinions and ideas in a constructive and concise way is amazing and you completely deserve to be recognised for the work you do!
When I first met you I honestly felt like I had nothing to give and that I was not as useful as the other members of my team. After doing the Debating Mental Health training I honestly knew I had to continue being part of something important and that although I had no experience I could use my voice to make a difference, and that what I had to say was just as important as anyone else. Thank you, Laura, the training you provided me has made a massive difference to me! I feel so much more confident and that I can make my voice heard in a much more successful way!”
Natalie, Young Leader
"I feel like I've been part of something really important that will bring about positive change in the mental health community that we so greatly need. It was so amazing to meet such inspirational people from around the world. A few years ago I would never have pictured myself being part of such great opportunities like this but I'm proud of how far I've come and I hope together we can show that people with mental illness deserve to be taken seriously and have better involvement in their care."
“The contribution by you at Debating Mental Health in bringing together a diverse group of young people from the UK who presented case studies and developed recommendations to give to Ministers was, for me, the highlight of the [Global Ministerial Mental Health] Summit 2018. Several Ministers commented to me on how much they appreciated the fact that young experts-by-experience were involved and that their voice was heard.”
Mark Pearson, Deputy Director, Directorate for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs, OECD
“The young people’s debate at the Annual Residential CAMHS Faculty Conference was utterly magical. Four young people from diverse backgrounds debated one of the hot topics of our time: Access to CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services). The training they had received from Laura Wallis from Debating Mental Health ensured that all four participated enthusiastically and explored the topic from all angles. The audience was so galvanised that the chair had to close down their questions 25 minutes after the programme end.”
Professor Helen Minnis, Academic Secretary for the CAMHS Faculty of the Royal College of Psychiatrists.