It’s not that I ever left, per say, just that for the past two years I have been primarily focused on my studies, my artistic practice, and my activism, and so this blog was left to the wayside.
I still have a lot to say about mental health- in fact since I last posted I have been part of a group of young people recording audio for a podcast (which I will be using this blog to brainstorm for and finish), I have been involved with the Make Our Rights Reality campaign in multiple ways: appearing on the BBC News at 6 , attending the Labour Party Conference in Brighton last September, designing the poetry anthology put together by fellow young people, and during lockdown being involved with consultations on the new Rights Advocate Hub currently being put together for the campaign. I have also been asked to talk at this weekends online summit for Rights Advocates and other young people involved in the campaign.
Whilst studying my Masters at University of the Arts London I set up and ran a society for students dealing with mental health issues, called The Mentally Chill Society. In our first and second years running we had over 70 members, and won an award for Best New Society (we were also nominated for Best Event, and I was personally nominated for Individual Contribution to a Society). This was definitely one of my biggest achievements and something I am deeply proud of to this day. I was asked to speak on a panel alongside a staff member of the university mental health team about the society and my experiences with mental health at an event hosted at Central Saint Martins called Design Change Makers: Mental Health 0.2 in front of an audience of almost 200 people back in March 2019, something I never thought I would be able to do! It was very sad passing on the baton when I finished my MA, but I made a lot of lasting friendships and developed both my confidence and various skills during my time running the society. I made connections with various mental health charities during this time including: Student Minds, PAPYRUS, Nightline, and The Listening Place, which was really helpful and enabled me to pass on their details to students who needed it in my society, and had a close relationship with various members of staff in the Student Services and mental health teams at my university.
My mental health has been up and down as I have navigated studying, working, activism, internships, and work placements and is still something I struggle with at times, however I am really pleased with everything I have accomplished, and I am keen to move forward with my activism and discussions of mental health. Onwards!