Young urban arts saves lives day by day,
a week full of activities that takes the pain away.
On Wednesday I remembered what happiness was.
I had always been on the side of depression and was finally getting across,
a smile gradually took over my face,
I was having fun and I swear I couldn’t have been in a better place .
I am not a mental health disorder I am me,
I am not my thoughts I can be whoever I want to be.
Things aren’t the best but they get better they always do.
Let’s stop looking back at the past because the past doesn’t define you,
how would we know a good day if we didn’t have a bad one?
I am Rachel and in a couple of years this will be a battle I have won.
You all have a space in my heart and after today we will all have a positive fresh start.
– Rachel, aged 15, a Skip to the Beat participant.
Young Urban Arts Foundation’s ‘Skip to the Beat’ programme helps young people break the stigma of mental health and find positive ways to express their emotions through creativity and music. The innovative programme utilised music, rapping, expressive writing and music production to help young people express themselves and provide effective tools to self-manage conditions.
The young people who took part in the new programme reported feeling happier, more confident and having a self-esteem boost from it.
Fifteen year old Rachel wrote the poem above after the first five days on the Skip to the Beat programme.
Find out more about the programme by watching the YouTube video below: