Ismael Hayden has been appointed as Project Manager and Ntale Eastmond and Kohliah Roberts have been appointed as Counsellors for the Mental Health Foundation’s new Becoming a Man programme.

Since 1949, the Mental Health Foundation has been the UK’s leading charity for mental health. With prevention at the heart of what it does, it aims to find and address the sources of mental health problems so that people and communities can thrive. Becoming A Man (BAM) is a two-year school-based counselling and mentoring programme that guides young men as they learn, practice, and internalize social-emotional skills, make responsible decisions for their future and become positive members of their school and community. MHF was seeking a Project Manager and Counsellors to roll out the programme across schools in Lambeth.

Society conducted a national search across the charity, schools, and further education sectors, as well as government, local councils and the NHS. We sought out candidates with experience in youth engagement, and who demonstrated strong interpersonal and communication skills. For the Project Manager, we identified candidates with team management and programme management skills. It was also important that the post-holders be reflective of and able to empathise with the communities they would be working with.

Ismael Hayden is a qualified psychologist with 10 years’ experience working in young people’s mental health. Most recently he served as Project Manager at Catch22. Ntale Eastmond is an experienced integrative and intercultural psychotherapeutic counsellor who most recently worked as a Wellbeing Advisor at Goldsmiths, University of London and prior to that as a Counsellor at UCL. Kohliah Roberts is a qualified counsellor who recently worked at Thomas Tallis Secondary School as a School Counsellor for secondary and sixth form students.

Ntale Eastmond commented: "I'm excited to be joining MHF as a BAM Counsellor for the Becoming a Man project. I have read and even cited research and articles from MHF in the past and it feels like an honour to be part of an organization whose ethics, politics and values so closely align with my own. This role, in particular, brings together my passion for mental health, social justice and working with young people, especially those from disenfranchised backgrounds, for the purpose of building a better future.

Thanks to Shehrazade at Society for her professional and still personable approach, and for recognising the fit between myself, MHF and the BAM project."