Founded in 2017 after the Dear family lost their daughter and sister Grace to suicide aged just 27, The Grace Dear Trust aims to help save the lives of other young people suffering with mental health issues.
Grace had been suffering with depression and anxiety from the age of 13 but hadn’t felt she could reach out to anyone to help her make sense of her feelings. No family should go through the same thing the Dear family did, and so The Grace Dear Trust was set up in her honour.
The charity now partners with six local schools in Surrey, UK, to raise awareness of the impact of poor mental health, encourage more people to speak openly about their feelings, reduce the stigma which surrounds mental health, and support schools in increasing their understanding of the importance of mental health. Their services include training, assemblies, youth theatres, after school clubs and reducing wait times for suitable interventions.
Why it matters
2020 highlighted the importance of mental health in young people as the pandemic severely disrupted everyday life. Young people were forced to stay at home in the most important years of their lives, being without their friends and support systems for nearly an entire year. Mental health has been one of the great casualties of the pandemic, and many had nowhere to turn during the turmoil. LEWIS supports The Grace Dear Trust initiatives to encourage young people to speak up by providing local schools with funding to offer activities that focus on mental wellbeing.
1 in 10 young people are affected by poor mental health and many suffer without the help they need. Let’s change that. It’s ok not to be ok.