Amy’s Story

Amy was 16 years old when they first engaged in the Mental Health Champions Project. Amy has a carer responsibility for her parent and have mental health issues that are being treated by health services. Amy attends a college in Salford and has very few friends and support networks. Amy finds trust and building relationships difficult, which was amplified by the pandemic, as it cut their social circle down and impacted on their sense of isolation. It was during the pandemic and lockdown that one of Amy’s friends tragically took their own life. As a result, this has made Amy want to help others so they would not feel as isolated and alone as Amy’s friend did.

Amy chose Manchester YMCA Mental Health Champions project as the vehicle to support others and end the stigma attached to mental health.

Since becoming a Mental Health Champion, Amy has been involved in over 15 mental health campaigns, has co-delivered mental health training sessions to new recruits, and has been a representative for the MHC Project with other charities.

Amy has said “YMCA Manchester has had a positive impact on my life. I feel supported, listened too and part of a community where I feel safe to be myself. Without this support, I don’t know where I would be. I still experience mental health challenges. However, due to the support of YMCA Manchester I am more equipped to manage it.”

In the 15 months since Amy has been volunteering for Manchester YMCA, they have grown in confidence and now has a part-time job.