Sign Emily's open letter to the Prime Minister

Delays in getting mental health support meant Emily had to suffer alone. With early intervention, Emily’s story could have been so different. Now Emily is using her experience to campaign for others.

She has written a passionate letter to the Prime Minister outlining the urgent need to invest in NHS mental health services to help young people to thrive. 

But she needs your support. Join Emily and sign her open letter to Rishi Sunak.

Sign the letter now

Read Emily's open letter

Dear Prime Minister,

My name is Emily, I’m 17 years old and I am someone who has struggled with my mental health.

I know from my experience of anxiety and depression how crippling it can be. I have suffered from both since I started at secondary school, and it has had a real impact on my life and my education.

Your teenage years are meant to be a time to have fun and learn. However, mine were full of mental health struggles. I missed a lot of school, and it reached breaking point at the time I was meant to do my GCSEs; my mental health was at an all-time low. I struggled to complete my GCSEs because I was in such a difficult position.

When I did ask for help with my mental health, it took months to get support. It was distressing having to wait for so long, trying to self-diagnose how I was feeling. Once I did meet a counsellor, it only lasted a few sessions. I needed more support and for longer, so I could continue to tackle the issues I was facing. Fortunately, I found YMCA and have received support in the community from them that has changed my life. 

I know that if I received help sooner, this would have made a huge difference to me and my education. I could have dealt with the issues quicker and wouldn’t have nearly dropped out of school.

And the truth is, I am not alone. In 2023, on average young people waited 167 days for mental health treatment. Sitting distressed and needing support for over five months! 

Waiting lists are long, early support isn’t available, and trained professionals such as youth workers are scarce due to lack of funding. I urge you to address these critical issues to support young people with their mental health, so they don’t reach crisis point like I did. 

Young people struggling with mental health often feel unheard, just another set of mental health statistics to brush under the carpet. We need that to change. 

I am calling on you to make mental and physical health and wellbeing a priority. To invest in NHS mental health services and to ensure young people get the early intervention they need so that my story is not the norm. 

I hope you will listen to the many young people who need you right now.

Yours sincerely,



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