Sophia Badhan, Diversity Lead for our Forward Thinking Birmingham Think4Brum Advisory Group, has been recognised with the highest accolade a young person can achieve for social action or humanitarian efforts – The Diana Award
Sophia, formerly an inpatient at our specialist Parkview Clinic, was determined to help other young people who were struggling with their mental health following her own discharge. She went on to lead a campaign at her school encouraging fellow pupils and staff to tackle the stigma and speak up about the challenges they may be facing.
“I was appointed as the school’s first ever Wellbeing Ambassador, which meant I designed and delivered sessions to Year 7 pupils called ‘Self-Care Isn’t Selfish’; championing the idea of early intervention and encouraging a healthy work-life balance.”
As an advocate and campaigner, Sophia shares her personal journey to enlighten and support others going through similar experiences with mental health and eating disorders.
Her work was rewarded with the prestigious Diana Award, set up as a lasting legacy to Her Royal Highness The Princess of Wales. She picked up the prize, which champions the power of young people to change the world, at a special ceremony at the House of Lords this summer.
“Princess Diana will always be a role model of mine and although I was not alive when she was, I feel as though I have this connection to her. It's strange actually, as a few of the things I've been involved with such as being part of a study group at The United Nations in Geneva would not have even been possible without her - our paths keep crossing.”
Sophia’s recent visit to Switzerland saw her meet Craig Hodges from Orygen Youth in Australia, who is working with the World Economic Forum to create a global mental health initiative.
The inspirational 18-year-old was also named as an #iWill Ambassador just a few weeks ago – a national title given to exceptional youth volunteers.