A fantastic local charity that equips young people to face life’s challenges has been named as Community Action Network (CAN)’s Community Hero in the Spotlight for December.

Helping Young Minds (HYM) supports every young mind to have the skills and confidence to face life’s challenges. The charity offers positive activities, creative workshops and educational courses with the aim of developing young people’s confidence, resilience and mental wellbeing so they can enjoy life to the fullest.

Activities range from dance, graffiti art and cooking to team-building workshops, outward-bound activities, or a movie night.

This Christmas, HYM are taking part in an exciting local event called the Christchurch Living Advent Calendar. This project aims to bring the community together and support local charities, as well as recognise local talent. There are 24 charities involved, 24 venues and 24 surprise performances, one on each day of December leading up to Christmas.

Helping Young Minds has been invited to perform on 12 December at the Mad4Dance centre to help raise funds. HYM was also chosen by Mr Green Estate Agents to be awarded a minimum of a £500 cheque.

Heidi, a 14-year-old beneficiary says about HYM: “Helping Young Minds has helped me to open up and discuss my feelings in a safe setting. The workshops have been fun and knowing there are people I can talk to outside of school and home is really reassuring.”

Zoe Grieco is a volunteer for HYM and mother of three, she says: “My children’s mental health is of utmost importance to me. Helping Young Minds strives to create ways to involve young people and enrich their lives and in turn, help their young minds to stay strong and able to face whatever life may bring.”

Another testimonial for HYM comes from Anna Payne, a parent of a beneficiary. She says: “At a very difficult time in my daughter’s life, Helping Young Minds has been invaluable. A truly special place for her to go to, where she can completely trust to feel non-judged and unconditionally supported by all those around her, giving her the opportunity to build confidence and vital self-worth.”

For the future, HYM hopes to offer more group therapy sessions and support groups, as well as offer creative and fun opportunities to young people where they can build healthy and supportive relationships while also having fun and learning a skill.

For more information, please visit HYM Facebook page