Four 'fabulous' young people reveal how they've kept mentally healthy during lockdown in Milton Keynes

Young people's mental health charity YiS has announced the four finalists in its Express Yourself competition.
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The MK-based service, which offers free counselling to young people aged 11 to 21 in Milton Keynes, ran a special competition during Children’s Mental Health Week earlier this month.

Out of dozens of entries, they have now narrowed it down to four "fabulous" finalists, said YiS education and training manager Antonietta Moch.

We had such a lovely time for Children’s Mental Health week and we just loved seeing how everyone expresses themselves," she said.

The YiS competition was a big successThe YiS competition was a big success
The YiS competition was a big success

Finalist 1 is Tyler, a young engineer who has a huge passion for art.

"I want to show my love to the world through my art. The art I created for this competition shows what I feel we need right now in this world. I believe during the struggling times we all need to express our love for one another and support each other as best as we can. This artwork expresses myself through passion and love," he said.

Tyler added: "I want to be able to help others in need, I would like to show my love and passion to everyone through my artwork. Mental health means a lot to me as I’ve experienced depression myself, it’s the worst feeling and I do not wish it on anybody. I just hope, with my art, I can help people get through their mental health problems and show them that they are not alone.”

Finalist 2 is Georgia, whose entry was a collage of photos she has taken over the past year.

"This represents how I express myself through photography and my love for capturing how beautiful the world is all around us! I'm honoured to be in the finals and I would be so lucky to get your vote,” she said.

Finalist 3 is Caeden, who is just five years old.

Caeden said: "I like to run, dance, and jump around. My favourite colour is green. I like to express myself by being outside and having fun. This picture was taken of me jumping and splashing in the sea when we went on holiday last time. When it gets to summer time everyone should get outside and try to have more fun because it can be good for you.”

Finalist 4 is Rachel, who describes herself as "an introverted, pansexual weirdo who loves to draw".

Rachel said she draws for fun as well as an outlet to express herself.

"Regardless of whether I'm feeling happy and bubbly, really low and anxious or even something I can't explain, my drawings never fail to help show who I am and how I feel, even if I can't find the words to describe it. My entry just shows me as me, bright, pansexual and happy to try and show the world who I am and what I can do. I'm proud of my entry. I'm proud of how I can express who I am. I'm proud to be me.”

The winner of the competition will have their design put on a limited edition YiS tote bag, as well as a £50 voucher of their choice and a hamper, which has kindly been donated by the Co-op Community Fund.

All of the finalists will receive a free limited edition YiS tote bag as well as other goodies.

Voting is now open and closes on February 28. You can vote here .

The winner will be announced live on Tuesday March 2. Follow @yismentalhealth for more details and exclusive updates.