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‘GLOBAL GOOD’ EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW SERIES BY TANITH HARDING

I AM ME

A MENTAL HEALTH APP TO EDUCATE, ENABLE & EMPOWER Claire Libby has always been passionate about wellbeing and as a result of growing up with an alcohol dependent parent, Claire felt the need to take control of her own mental health and wellbeing from a young age. Claire’s career over the last 10 years has been focused on supporting young people, helping them build employability skills whilst in school, college and university, supporting them with their move from education into the commercial world. So, after two years of research into the area of mental health, embarking on a Masters in Psychology, numerous focus groups with young people, discussions with schools, and with the help of professionals in the field of mental health, i am me was created. 

Tanith: Claire you are passionate about helping to support mental health in young people, what made you want to create such a comprehensive tool?

“The early stages of a young person’s life can really go on to define and shape who they become in later life.”

Claire: Mental health has always been part of my life, from growing up with an alcohol dependent parent and being exposed to attempted suicide during my teens. I felt I needed to take control of my own mental health and wellbeing from a young age. The early stages of a young person’s life can really go on to define and shape who they become in later life. My early childhood experiences have certainly shaped the woman I am today. Things have shifted since my childhood, with regard to the use of technology and social media, and the stats surrounding mental health in young people are alarming and so I started to think about what could be done. I began my research journey to understand more about the mental health of young people, and it was clear that the majority of support services available were based on cure, so once a diagnosis had been made. Through my discussions with young people it became clear they needed something that could help as more of a preventative tool, guiding them through life and helping them to become more able to cope and support themselves. Young people need to be educated to recognise the signs of when things start to not feel quite right, so they can use an intervention tool to support themselves. That’s where the work that we are doing comes in. It is that intervention and that’s why we created i am me, a free positive mental health app, designed to educate, enable and empower.

Tanith: How do young people interact with i am me and what are the key benefits as a young person?

Claire: The focus of the work we do is a free educational app that focuses on 6 key areas of lifestyle medicine. Lifestyle medicine is a relatively new approach, currently being used in the medical profession. It is focused on lifestyle because they are the things that anyone can influence. The choices that we make regarding our lifestyle are responsible for a staggering 70% of all deaths worldwide according to the World Health Organisation. So, our mission is to educate all young people about how things such as stress management, nutrition, sleep, relationships, movement, and headspace can impact their mental health, so they can go on to make informed choices about how they go on to lead their lives.

Whilst the app is focused very much on prevention, there are whole host of articles, tools and tips, audios and videos for those that are struggling with their mental health or want to simply learn more about themselves and how they can positively impact their wellbeing. The content has been created by our amazing supporters, made up of psychologists, nutritionists, psychotherapists, mental health practitioners, counsellors, and teen Samaritans. We do a lot of work with educators and run sessions for pupils in schools, colleges, universities, and employers to position the app as a resource for their young people to tap into. These sessions also help each young person to realise that they can take an active role in supporting how they feel and how they deal with life’s challenges, now and in the future. 99 AWARENOW / THE MAYDAY EDITION

www.IamAwareNow.com

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AwareNow: Issue 16: The Mayday Edition  

In this issue, we present stories that speak to the needed conversation of awareness to action. For the causes we support that tie us all to...

AwareNow: Issue 16: The Mayday Edition  

In this issue, we present stories that speak to the needed conversation of awareness to action. For the causes we support that tie us all to...

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