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Posted On: 24th Oct 2013

Help With Mental Health

Fixers Grace and Jess give their presentation to a class
Fixers Grace and Jess
A slide from the presentation

Two Fixers from East Sussex are giving a presentation to young people to raise awareness of conditions like depression, bipolar disorder and PTSD.


Grace Berkery and Jess Constable, who are both 17 and from Crowborough, are using the resource in workshops with school pupils.


The Fixers are encouraging young people to challenge the myths surrounding mental health, while informing students of symptoms and suggesting coping strategies.


They also want young people to understand how they can help their peers.


The presentation is inspired by the girls’ own experiences. Grace was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder after a serious house fire and Jess faced mental health issues following the death of her grandad. Their story was shown on ITV News Meridian earlier this month.


They held their first workshops at Beacon Community College during the second week of October, to coincide with World Mental Health Day.


‘I’ve really enjoyed doing it. It’s built our confidence and it’s nice to be able to share our experiences of mental health to try and encourage others to talk about their problems,’ says Grace.


‘We’ve been giving out Post-it notes at the end of each session, and asking people to write down what they think was good about the presentation and what they think should be improved,’ adds Jess.


‘So far we haven’t had any suggestions for improvement - everyone says it’s been really informative.’


Among their first group was Year 8 pupil, Charlie, who said: ‘I learnt that anyone can suffer mental health problems and I now know there are plenty of places you can go if you need someone to talk to.’


In addition to their workshops with school pupils, Grace and Jess have also given their presentation to teachers and are hoping to take their message into other local schools.


They have chosen to include resources from other Fixers projects in their presentation, showing 18-year-old Natalie Brown’s poster campaign and 19-year-old Michael Ashton’s film.


If you’re interested in finding out more from Grace and Jess about their presentation, contact us at talk2me@fixers.org.uk or visit their ‘Be Kind 2 Your Mind’ campaign page on Facebook, or follow them on Twitter.

Author: Emily Tolloczko


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