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Impact Stories

Ana’s story: A space to speak freely

I am Ana and life before I joined Place2Be, Future Youth Zone’s one-to-one counselling programme was really hard and quarantine didn’t make that any better. I joined the Youth Zone because I heard it was a place to talk. I struggle with my mental health, family issues and self-confidence; so when I knew I had a chance to get better I asked for help. Something that made me come was realising I had to talk to someone, so I could get better. I started Place2Be and then started counselling for guidance and to learn to cope with emotions that like ‘talk over me’. This was my chance to speak freely.

At the start of the process I felt like no one would understand the way I felt and felt like I was at a point that my mental health just couldn’t get any better. When you struggle with mental health, it effects everything from simple things like getting out of bed, taking time for self-care or sleep become the hardest things to do. Place2Be has helped me realise that even though this feeling feels ‘weird’ or ‘unreal’, it’s normal to have your bad days because there are better days ahead. It has changed the way I cope with feelings that sometimes overpower the good days. I might be able to prove myself wrong, with my mental health, where there’s a will there’s a way.

The people at Future Youth Zone are so kind and supportive and there are so many activities, so it won’t be hard for anyone to find something they like. My personal favourite is the music room 🙂 I think the programme is a great thing because our voices feel so small in a world so big. If I had to explain it, it’s like the world is really loud, it talks over how you feel, it interrupts your piece of mind so when you go into a room with someone who finally focuses on just you…It feels like someone is listening to you, like finding your voice in the middle of the world’s messiness.  One of my youth workers told me that “You have happy eyes, I can see your smile through your eyes”.

Life before I joined Place2Be, Future Youth Zone’s one-to-one counselling programme was really hard and quarantine didn't make that any better. I joined the Youth Zone because I heard it was a place to talk. At the start of the process I felt like no one would understand the way I felt and felt like I was at a point that my mental health just couldn't get any better. The programme has helped me realise that even though this feeling feels 'weird' or 'unreal', it’s normal to have your bad days because there are better days ahead.