The second quarter of the year has seen batyr continue to change the way young people talk about mental health. May was our largest month of program delivery ever and June saw batyr events runs across the country, with positive messages of hope and resilience delivered to young people far & wide.
This would not be possible without the help of our partners and supporters. This quarter alone we have seen fundraising efforts taking place all over the East Coast of Australia. From an event called ‘Darkness into Light’ in Bondi, to the White Elephant Ball in Tamworth, a fitness expo called WELLFEST in Newcastle, a Cycling event down in Canberra, and One Sock Wednesdays out in Cobar, and a host of Trivia nights from Rouse Hill to the Hunter; we are so grateful for the incredible support we have received. Thank you for making what we do possible, and thanks for doing your bit to help smash the stigma around mental health!
The momentum has continued into the second quarter of 2016, with 40 school programs delivered across the quarter, we are on the way to our target of 150 programs to be run in 2016! On top of the [email protected] programs we have also worked with a number of other schools and groups with follow up programs, full day programs and two parent forums.
Schools are starting to see the benefit of utilising batyr as a holistic approach to supporting their students mental health. It is great to have 8 schools now focusing on training their teachers to better support their students through batyr’s Teacher Professional Development program along with 2 new schools rolling out the [email protected] Chapter with a committee of students.
The team is continuing to grow with full time Program Coordinators coming on board in Victoria and Queensland as well as training more casual facilitators in these states.
Throughout this Quarter we have continued to develop and roll out new and fresh content for the variety of programs we already offer and the programs we would like to offer in the future; including new follow up programs, breakout sessions, the [email protected] Chapter resource and new fun ice breakers!
“This is the second year with Batyr and they connect with kids like no other program I’ve seen. They’re engaging, they connect on a personal level and the personal stories make it real.” Head of Welfare – Calrossy Anglican High School
“I left for exchange right when batyr UTS was starting up and when I came back at the start of 2015 I saw a change (and improvement) in university culture. The friends who had been to a program or an event had become more open about their mental health and aware of the mental health of others. To me, allowing the voiceless to start sharing their stories is how we can all learn to be receptive of these stories. It is how we remove the stigma around mental health. That’s why I’m spending 2016 to help others share more stories and smash the stigma” Engineering Student UTS
Largely driven by the student team, and supported by great faculty relationships we saw a significant reach across the university community in Q2 of 2016, which culminates the 2nd year of the project so far at UTS. We delivered [email protected] programs which reached 572 UTS students and staff since mid April. Being Herd workshop ran in April with 9 student speakers trained, and a batyr first of 5 males participating in the one program, largely thanks to a collaborative recruitment effort across key student groups in the lead up. Our student exec team of 16 ran their first solo-project: ‘herd of batyr’, an open night encouraging people to become involved in different volunteer projects and showcasing their ideas. One Sock One Goal helped to launch the Elite Athlete Program with UTS Sport, featuring batyr ambassador Sharni Layton (of the NSW swifts) addressing the students regarding their mental health resilience at the Elite Athletes awards night. Overall we are seeing a more established and mature program continuing to reach and help students at UTS.
[email protected] has seen a real mix of events over the past three months. The inaugural Spoke Up saw a collective of over 200 students join for a battle of the bikes, with a multitude of events from road racing to mountain biking, all with the intention to raise awareness around mental health. Along with this programs have been run at a number of residential halls, with the first round of faculty programs booked in for semester 2. We were delighted to gain the support of the Uni-Norths Owls rugby Club for their annual ladies day where the 1st, 2ND & 3RD XV teams wore the batyr socks and new ambassador Ben Alexander promoted that it is okay to not be okay!
Stop the press…..batyr are going to Adelaide to join up with the University of South Australia! We are recruiting as you read this so please send anyone who you think may be interested in joining the crew to our careers page of our website for more details.
Blue Tie Ball
Blue Tie Ball tickets are now on sale. This year we will be celebrating our 5th birthday on the 27th August and we would love for you to join us. For more details and to purchase your tickets click here.
Big thanks to our 2016 Blue Tie Ball sponsors. If you or your company are interested in becoming a sponsor we still have packages available. Get in contact with Jono Peatfield at [email protected] for more information.
From all of us at batyr thank you for the ongoing support and generosity, and from the young people we reach, here is one message illustrating the power of having positive conversations around mental health:
“As someone who suffers from mental illness I’d like to thank you for sharing your story and giving me hope. From now on I’ll stop wearing the mask around my friends and family.”