Tiny Changes is a mental health charity set up by my family and I with a focus on helping young people and children and those responsible for their care and wellbeing. After the tragic suicide of my brother Scott last year my family and I knew we had to carry on his legacy in the same way he built it over all these years, by helping people with a message of hope and togetherness.
Scott suffered all through his life with anxiety and depression and spoke often about his own struggles as an anxious child, which is the reason behind the band name Frightened Rabbit. This is why we feel it is important to focus our attentions on young people and children and use a preventive approach, rather than attempting to fix a problem that has already taken hold in a person’s life.
We want to see a country where young people are listened to when they talk.
At its heart Tiny Changes has a passion for changing how young people in Scotland are affected by mental health issues. We want to see a country where young people are listened to when they talk. Where young people can access the support they need, when they need it and where youth mental health issues do not prevent people from fulfilling their potential as adults.
Our main objectives will be to raise awareness and adjacent understanding and education of mental health issues in young people, provide support to those who need it and give a voice to the younger generation through lobbying for change in policy and practice in mental health care.
Growing up is hard at the best of times but growing up with an illness that can be isolating and terrifying without showing any physical symptoms can be debilitating. Children are growing up in a world of constant judgement and environments where pressure to conform can feel immeasurably great and yet often cries for help are going unheard until the point of crisis. The government’s Child And Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) are underperforming dramatically, with waiting times reaching up to a year for some.
We as adults have a responsibility towards the younger generation and we need to start listening to them and showing them the care and compassion they deserve. By making tiny changes we can collectively inspire big changes, and by better understanding each other and our loved ones these big changes are achievable.
Image: Grant and Scott together in 2016, by Shirlaine Forrest/WireImage