Claire’s career over the last 10 years has been focused on supporting young people, helping them build employability skills whilst in school, college and university, and more recently supporting them with their move from education into the commercial world. During this time Claire has seen a real shift in the way young people view themselves, which prompted her to create i am me. As Head of Next Gen Development and Innovation for The Linac Group, Claire felt it was vital that the business used its 20+ years of global learning and development experience to support young people in a not-for-profit capacity. As a single mum of two teenage boys Claire has gained a great insight into the struggles that young people face in today’s fast paced tech-driven world.
Jasmine Hemsley is a wellbeing expert, author, restaurateur, TV presenter and cook. As co-founder of Hemsley + Hemsley and creator of Ayurvedic brand East by West, Jasmine has inspired her global audience to shift their perspectives on food and lifestyle to a more holistic and intuitive outlook. Rated in the top 20 influential chefs in the UK, Jasmine uses her platform as a practical and passionate homecook to encourage a return to a simpler, more mindful way of life, while inspiring her audience to deepen their commitment to sustainability in food, fashion and the way they consume in general. Jasmine is also a trained sound therapist, yogi and meditator, and has pioneered the use of therapeutic frequencies of sound with immersive sound baths.
Jan is an experienced psycho-therapeutic counselling professional and personal development coach, with practices in Cheltenham and London Harley Street, and global clients in Norway, Spain, France and the USA. Jan has been practising for twenty-three years and still loves her work. She is an accredited counsellor with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy, as well as a qualified coach, and supervisor of other qualified therapists. Her special interests include addiction, mental health, young adults’ issues, relationship breakdown, and Asperger’s syndrome. Jan loves nature and being outdoors, and can often be found bike riding or walking in the beautiful Gloucestershire countryside.
Having grown up with an alcohol-dependent father whom he saw take his own life when he was just 9 years old, Josh had always found life a struggle. Josh began drinking alcohol and taking drugs when he was 12 years old, and his life spiralled quickly out of control. Looking back, he believes that alcohol addiction had already become a problem for him by age 16. He became a father at 18 and things continued to get worse until at 24 his life changed, when he decided to quit alcohol and drugs for good. He has been on a healing journey ever since and now speaks nationally about his experiences with trauma and mental wellbeing in general.
Social entrepreneur. Influencer. Vegan. Yogi. Risk-taker. Valeria worked in the private banking industry for five years until she switched it all for a life of meaning and to start WaterThruSkin - a platform about lifestyle with conscience, aimed at inspiring people to live more sustainably. Since then, she’s been traveling the world visiting eco-friendly and soul-enriching hotels to acquire a vast knowledge of different cultures, green design and plant-based cuisine, while also promoting sustainable and ethical practices, brands and hotels. In 2017, Valeria also founded WTS Connect – the first blogger agency focused on sustainability and ethics, and in 2019 Valeria and her co-Founder Carmen Busquets are launching Liki, an application with the mission of making a conscious lifestyle easier for everyone.
CoppaFeel! are the first breast cancer charity in the UK to solely create awareness amongst young people with the aim of instilling the knowledge and tools they need to get to know their bodies. They like to talk about a serious message in a light-hearted way, empowering people to start healthy habits for life. They are on a mission to encourage you to check your boobs and pecs regularly, educate you on the signs and symptoms of breast cancer and empower you to seek advice from a doctor if symptoms persist.
Lauren Lovatt is a plant-based chef and entrepreneur; founder of The Plant Academy, co-founder of the Plant Hub and the woman behind Feed Your Mind Candy. Lauren has openly shared her journey with mental health issues over the years which led her to a burning passion to inspire others through food, from her aspirational vegan restaurant 'Asparagasm', to her ‘Plant Academy’ in East London, founded with the aim of inspiring a passion for sustainable, creative and delicious plant-based food. Lauren is part of the i am me team to share tasty and easy recipes to feed your mind. Find Lauren @lauren_lovatt & @plantacademyuk.
Laura Mucha studied psychology, philosophy and flying trapeze and swam in Antarctica before becoming a lawyer. Then, when she was hit by a car, she changed career – she’s now an award-winning poet, author and speaker. Her first book for adults, Love Factually, was featured on Channel 4’s Sunday Brunch, WNYC, ABC Australia and BBC Radio 4 Woman’s Hour and was Sydney Morning Herald’s Pick of the Week. Laura also writes for young people, and her poems have been widely published around the world, illustrated by Chris Riddell, set to music by Cheryl Frances-Hoad, and performed by Helena Bonham Carter. They’ve also appeared on BBC Radio 6 Music, BBC Radio 3 and Classic FM, and last year Poetry Ireland featured her as one of eight poets displayed on the Dublin overground. For more information visit lauramucha.com.
SLG is a design-led beauty brand innovator with a collection of on-trend brands created for Gen Z and millennials. The company HQ is in Cheltenham but its brands span the globe from London to New York and Tokyo to Moscow.
As a company whose brands continually engage with young consumers, SLG wished to support i am me because they share so many common values with this hugely worthy initiative. These include helping young minds to believe in themselves, and to have the confidence to be the best “me” that they can.
Kids Against Plastic
Can we count on adults alone to save the planet? Amy and Ella, young founders of Kids Against Plastic, don’t think so. That’s why they are working hard to inspire all of us, young people, adults, businesses and communities, to do something about the problems caused by single-use plastics and become plastic clever. Amy and Ella Meek founded their campaign Kids Against Plastic in 2016 after learning about the UN’s Global Goals and taking seriously the need for everyone to do their bit. They realised plastic was a double-edged sword: a magnificent invention, but also an enormous environmental monster in waiting. So they decided to act, and over the last two years have worked hard to inspire school children, engage politicians, business leaders and academics, and to motivate families, cafés, businesses and people to become Plastic-Clever.
Paul has more than 40 years experience working in IT building SaaS technology businesses. He has worked in a range of sectors including marketing, e-commerce, finance and environmental services and has considerable technical and business experience. More recently he has developed an application called CareerRadar which is used by schools, universities and charities to help young people choose a career. Paul has been a driving force in the development of the i am me app.
Bill has over 30 years’ experience in working with young people in supporting career choices. This has involved career counselling, supporting the development of many on-line software tools and in designing programmes of learning.
Bill has found that once a person really understands their career purpose and what their strengths are then this makes career success and fulfilment of potential possible. This helps the building of inner confidence so young people can grow and flourish.
Accomplishment is Tom’s passion in life. Accomplishment for himself and for others. Tom worked professionally in financial services for 17 years and left his career to follow his passion in life and is now currently leading the accomplishment coaching company Passion Fit with his wife and co-coach, Loren. Tom specialises in coaching athletes in preparation for triathlons and other endurance events and has experience of coaching from entry level up to elite status across many sports. Tom has considerable experience working with athletes that suffer with anxiety as a result of trauma, specifically following experiences of domestic abuse as a result of first hand experience as an abuse survivor.
Eco-Age is a specialist sustainability and communications consultancy, working with a global roster of clients to build responsible business practices promoted via comprehensive communication strategies & cross-channel storytelling.
Offering value-driven business strategy that delivers financial performance & benefits to people and planet, Eco-Age is a leading and trusted voice, providing expertise in bringing positive, sustainable change to key audiences.
Brayan Del Castillo
Whilst Brayan was living in Los Angeles he was exposed to many triggers to mental health at a young age that led him to fall into his own darkness. As he got out of that state and grew older he took time out to travel and see more of the world. During this time he realised that there are many young people that struggle, whether that be as a result of what others say and think, or what they think of themselves based on the experiences that they have gained. Helping others with their emotional and mental health has been and always will be Brayan’s goal in life! Brayan is founder of SYOTOS.ORG, which is a support community based in the U.S. set up to support young people and change the stigma behind anxiety, depression, and other mental illnesses.
Jess is a Youth Worker and is passionate about supporting young people to achieve their fullest potential; offering a helping hand, supportive ear and often a big hug to overcome any barriers they have to good mental health, education and happiness. Until recently she ran a project supporting Young Adult Carers and now works in Higher Education helping students make informed decisions about their futures. Jess grew up with a mum who was an alcoholic and a sister with autism - life was often chaotic and at times caused her to be chaotic. These experiences led to her wanting to support children and young people going through similar issues. Jess continues to be an advocate for young carers and is passionate about the power of fun for looking after our mental health. Jess is a massive foodie and loves to keep fit; happiest when she starts her day in the gym and finishes with a big pizza - a healthy life is all about balance!
Sarah Shellard is currently practising as a qualified, registered Art Psychotherapist specialising in children and adolescents with behavioural, emotional, and social difficulties. Sarah is accredited with the British Association of Art Psychotherapist and the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy. Sarah found art to be a meaningful outlet during her adolescence having been fortunate to have had a supportive and inspirational art tutor guiding her to channel her emotions into artworks. Sarah has a strong background in volunteering and working with all walks of life giving her a strong foundation with which to begin her training and career as an art psychotherapist. Sarah believes that offering a creative space for a young person to express themselves non-verbally, allowing them to feel heard and understood, can be a powerful tool in helping the young person’s wellbeing. Sarah has worked as an art therapist for almost 10 years and continues to enjoy learning and specialising in children and adolescent’s mental health and wellbeing.
Dr Dominique Thompson
Dominique is an award winning GP, young people's mental health expert, TEDx speaker, author and educator, with over 20 years of clinical experience caring for students. She was named Bristol Healthcare Professional of the Year in 2017. She is author of The Student Wellbeing Series (Trigger Press), a short series of guides for young people aged 16-25 about mental health, wellbeing and life at university, and co-author of How to Grow a Grown Up (PenguinRandomHouse), a book for parents, carers, teachers and anyone working with young people, about raising independent and resilient young adults ready for the challenges of the 21st century. Dom has done two TEDx talks about young people’s mental health and wellbeing; ‘What I learnt from 78000 GP consultations with university students’ (about perfectionism, competitiveness and the pressures of being young today) and ‘Understanding Why’, looking at why young people self-harm. She is also a co-author of Student Mental Health & Wellbeing in Higher Education: A practical guide (Sage). Dom is a Clinical Advisor for NICE, the Royal College of GPs, the Anorexia Bulimia Care charity, and for Student Minds, the UK's student mental health charity. You can follow her on Twitter and Instagram @drdomthompson, and find her on LinkedIn and Facebook. Dom’s TEDx talks and other interviews are available on YouTube.
Kimberley is passionate about the use of dance and movement as a vessel for communication, expression, healing and empowerment for any and every body. Kimberley has been a pioneer in moving Dance Movement Psychotherapy into the NHS within the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) as well as the Eating Disorder Life Span Service for young people and adults. Kimberley is motivated to continue to raise awareness and accessibility of DMP, due to the power of this modality in today’s current climate where both mind and body are in states of overwhelm. As a Dance Movement Psychotherapist Kimberley facilitates the Psychotherapeutic use of movement and dance, through which a person can engage creatively with a process to support their mental and physical health and ultimately express themselves beyond words.
Alongside her work in NHS, Kimberley also runs her own private practice facilitating both individual and group sessions and is honoured to be part of the Iam Me App team creating content to support the next generation of healthy and empowered young people.
Dr Megan Rossi (PhD, RD, APD)
Dr Megan Rossi, founder of The Gut Health Doctor, is considered one of the most influential gut health specialists internationally. A Registered Dietitian and Nutritionist for the last decade with an award-winning PhD in gut health, recognised for its contribution to science receiving the Dean’s Award for outstanding research.
A leading Research Fellow at King’s College London, Megan is currently investigating nutrition-based therapies in gut health, including pre- and probiotics, dietary fibres, plant-based diversity, the low-FODMAP diet and food additives, as well as having set up The Gut Health Clinic in London, where she leads a team of gut-specialist dietitians. More recently, Megan has created her own gut health food company Bio&Me to bridge the gap between science and food industry.
Frustrated that her findings weren’t reaching the public, and instead seeing fad and potentially dangerous misinformation on gut health being spread, Megan took to social media to share credible, evidence-based advice, building an engaged community of over 170,000 people so far.
Her first book, Eat Yourself Healthy, published in September 2019 as an easy-to-digest guide to gut health and beyond, immediately became an Amazon and The Sunday Times best seller. Megan has also been recognised as Business Insider’s Top 100 Coolest People in Food & Drink and named Young Australian Achiever of the Year in the UK 2020.