What is Flip The Script Friday?
Flip The Script Friday is an event that takes place on a fortnightly basis where we invite organisations/adults onto our website/social media to answer the questions that young people have for them.
Why is it a thing?
This is an opportunity for young people’s voices to be heard and to have their questions answered. But equally, it’s a chance to destigmatize the discussion of mental health, highlight the great work that organisations are doing and to make reaching out for support from them less intimidating.
We collaborated with Project Hope. They are a youth-led project for 13-25 year olds that was set up at the beginning of lockdown to help tackle youth loneliness. The project provides social media activity with challenges, facts and information to help provide a sense of hope and also runs regular zoom sessions for young people across the UK (and beyond!) to connect and have fun. We run all sorts of sessions from creative writing, language learning, games nights to open mics and so much more. In the middle of lockdown we were running 3 sessions a week but are currently running 1 session a week on Saturdays at 7pm. There’s no adults involved in any part of the project so it really is a space just for young people. You don’t have to be feeling lonely to attend, you might just want to meet some new people or give something new a go.
Meet the employees
Naomi – Founder and coordinator of Project Hope. I lead the project and support all of the volunteers as well as attending most of the session.
Harry – Hosts team leader. Harry coordinates the hosts team, makes our posters and makes sure we have amazing sessions for young people each week
Freya – Admin and social media co-team leader. Freya posts some of our social media content as well as making sure our eventbrites and emails are up to date.
We had so many questions sent in by young people to our Instagram @platfform4yp and here are some of the highlights!
What do you think of the idea Flip the script?
I think it’s a fantastic idea to give young people a chance to ask questions and break down barriers between professionals and young people – we are all human after all! – Naomi
What is your favourite genre of music?
I don’t really have a favourite genre as such – I listen to lots of different stuff. My go to playlists are acoustic playlists or anything from musicals- Naomi
I’m a big fan of the 80s – I’ve got my parents to thank for that. – Harry
What do you think needs to change for people to receive better mental health support?
Support needs to be provided much earlier rather than waiting until young people reach crisis support. I also think there needs to be a lot more peer support available with a lot more co-production in mental health services too – Naomi
Support services need to listen to the voices of young service users and tailor the support that they offer to the needs of the young people they’re serving. – Harry
I think there needs to be more emphasis on early intervention and catching people before they become even more unwell. The high thresholds can make accessing support so tricky. – Freya
What motivates you to get out of bed in the morning and do the job you do?
Making connections with other young people. The volunteer team of young people have really become close friends of mine now too. Also just knowing we are creating a space for other young people to feel like they are part of something is awesome. – Naomi
Being able to connect with a group of like minded people who want to make the world a better place. – Harry
Meeting so many amazing people who inspire me to be the best I can be. – Freya
What is one piece of advice you were given that you will never forget?
“Feel the fear and do it anyway” I can’t remember when I first came across this but it’s been said to me in so many different ways. It’s always pushed me to step outside of my comfort zone and that’s led to so many awesome opportunities. It was also a huge part of the way I built Project Hope as we just wanted to give this huge idea a go and put the fear of failure to one side. – Naomi
“Take care of yourself, so that you can give the best of you to the world as opposed to just giving what’s left of you” – This really resonated with me, and reminds me of the importance of taking time for myself so that I can be at my best when I’m trying to create change. Burnout is real, and we have to be mindful of it.” – Harry
What is your spirit animal?
This is a good question and I wasn’t sure so I did a quiz! It says my spirit animal is a tiger, which is a weird coincidence as I was born in the Chinese year of the Tiger. It says this means Ienjoy dealing with life matters spontaneously, trusting my intuition and acting fast when needed and I think that’s pretty accurate. – Naomi
Can you explain/what do you think about déjà vu?
I don’t think I can but it’s a strange experience isn’t it? It’s something I occasionally experience too and it always takes me by surprise! – Naomi
If you could send the public one message about misconceptions that exist around mental health, what would it be?
You don’t have to be struggling with extreme levels of mental illness to deserve help. Whether you’ve been struggling for 5 years or 5 months, and regardless of how much you’re struggling, you deserve help and support. – Freya
What do you think of the ‘drop the diagnosis’ movement, is there a middle ground?
I think there is a middle ground. To me it’s not about saying that diagnosis isn’t helpful for anyone, for some having a way to name it is useful but for others it is really harmful. For me it’s about saying all of our experiences are unique and instead of making assumptions really listening on an individual level and listening to someone’s experiences in the context of their life story. – Naomi
I think that for some people having a diagnosis can be really helpful. I wish we lived in a world where people can get support regardless of diagnoses, but it can also be really helpful to have an answer for why I experience certain things and helps to make things make sense. – Freya
How do you look after yourself and your mental health/wellbeing when working?
Self-care is really important and also making connections and reaching out to others. Leading this project of young volunteers’ well-being has been my priority so checking in with them genuinely has been important and giving people breaks when they need it. The same for me really too, having breaks when things are tough, making sure I’m scheduling in some me time and reaching out to my friends if I need a chat (or often a rant!) – Naomi
Remembering that I am part of a team of wonderful people, and remembering that I can lean on them sometimes if I need support. – Harry
How do you look after yourself and your mental health/wellbeing when at home?
The same as with working really. My volunteer work and home often merge especially because of lockdown and the fact I do all of it from my bedroom. One of the biggest things for me is making sure I’m attending my sessions with my counsellor – I find that really helps to keep me on track and to start to learn more about myself. Also taking a step away from the screen and connecting with something creative – I love writing poetry or doing some art with a bit of music on in the background. – Naomi
Is there any stigma around the work you do? If so, what should people know about your role?