Ellie volunteers with See Me Scotland, and was kind enough to share with us her journey and what volunteering means to her.
“I began my volunteering journey in 2017 when I had just graduated university and was looking for a new string to add to my bow! As a psychology graduate, I was really interested in anything mental health related and an opportunity arose when the Education and Young People’s team (EYP) at See Me Scotland were looking for new volunteer Youth Champions. I decided to apply because it was something new and exciting, as well as being a cause close to my heart: mental health. I was lucky enough to get invited along and from there everything has flourished.
My time with See Me EYP has allowed me to deliver Scotland’s Mental Health First Aid training to young people and adults across the country. It has taken me international with a trip to the Together Against Stigma International Conference in Singapore in 2019 where I was able to share our work and learn from others at a global level! I have been fortunate enough to have attended a meeting with MSPs in relation to the mental health of children and young people. I also got to speak at an NHS Scotland conference to those who direct and influence policy and practice in relation to young people and mental health.”
“Volunteering with See Me EYP really is young person led. For example, we were hands on in developing, hosting and facilitating a shared learning event which was attended by different organisations across the children, young people, and youth work sector. This was an opportunity for everyone to share what they have been doing. All these experiences have reinforced for me how integral it is for young people to have a voice, to be involved and to be heard!
Most significantly for me though, I have been part of a family that is supportive and pro-active. We come from all different backgrounds but unite in our passion to address mental health disparity for children and young people by spreading messages, challenging perceptions & taking action! In the last year I have also been lucky enough to have been taken on as a Youth Worker and so I now have even more opportunities to make an impact – and to support others in doing so as well!”