A Pershore College student shared her personal story as part of WCG’s events to support Mental Health Awareness Week.
WCG’s seven colleges across Warwickshire and Worcestershire hosted events including special yoga classes, mindfulness activities, staff training and visits from external organisations such as Springfield Mind.
Mollie-Anne Mayneord, 19, who is studying Animal Management at Pershore College, created a video about her personal experience with an eating disorder and her recovery. As well as presenting to her own tutor group, Mollie’s video was shown at students tutorials throughout the week at all seven colleges.
Mollie said, “Mental health is a topic that is not talked about, it is almost like people brush it off and disregard it because a lot of the time the damage is not visible. I feel very passionate about helping others and educating everyone that a lot of the things we ignore in our minds have the potential to take control of us without any realisation, as I myself have demonstrated.
“Sharing my story has been a huge challenge for me and it was a big decision to make, however, I have not done this for people to feel sorry for me, I have done this to give people hope. Talking about this is the only way we can reduce the stigma attached, it is the only way we can begin to accept mental illness for what it really is … an illness and not a choice.
“The support I have received has amazed me and truly has made me take a step back and see the things that I have achieved. I have been so touched by all the comments I have received so far and I can not begin to explain how much it means to me that my story is making a difference to the lives of other people.
“I believe that no one should be afraid to discuss their mental illness, just as someone would not be afraid to tell their friend they have broken a bone. Talking saved me and it honestly can save so many others so please do talk to someone.”
During the week, Mollie also raised £146.46 for BEAT, the UK’s eating disorder charity.
Judith Abbott, Specialist Support Tutor for Mental Health was the lead for the week. She said, “I’d like to say a big thank you to everyone who supported Mental Health Awareness Week across all of our colleges. I’m so proud of all the students who took part raising awareness and money for related charities, and especially Mollie for sharing her story to help others. We were also delighted to have the support of organisations such as Springfield Mind throughout the week.”