Children’s Mental Health Week 2023, 6 – 12 February, is all about making a difference to the lives of children and young people across the UK. The awareness week is organised and promoted by the charity Place2Be. The theme this year is “Let’s Connect.”
Today, as part of our week-long celebration of Children’s Mental Health Week, we are pleased to introduce a young guest author. Ffion is a member of the Junior Start Well Board* in Powys, and writes about her life as a young person here in Mid Wales.
Life is a cage, which constantly suffocates me. The labels have become a cage – student, carer, daughter, sister, anxiety, traumatised, sad, lonely, different. But when I read I am transported, it’s like the key to my cage. I feel free. It’s my lifeline, I relate to aspects of characters and their stories so, if even for a moment, I feel less alone. Less Different. I feel valid.
The connections I feel to these books, these characters, these storylines have helped me grow as a person. I’ve learned to respect my differences, and they are actually what makes me stronger. I’ve learned that fear is a tool, and using it will open doors and help me get places. I’ve learned that empathy and kindness isn’t a weakness, you have to lose some things to help you find better ones. Life is a cage, which constantly suffocates me. My key was reading, it has helped me deal with the pressure and changed my life for the better.
*Junior Start Well Board is a group of young people aged 11 – 17 years of age who meet every month to talk about the issues affecting young people. The purpose of the group is to listen to the views and the opinions of their peers and provide a voice for young people in Powys, so that they can feedback and contribute to decisions that affect them. Based on these conversations, they ask to meet with the services in Powys who are best placed to listen and respond or look at setting up any new projects in response to need.
If you would like more information on how to join please contact email@example.com
Reading Well for teens suggests recommended reading and digital resources to help you understand your feelings and boost your confidence.