‘My Story’ as told by Calvin Glen…
I am an eighteen year old local singer/songwriter with Asperger’s. As a result of having Asperger’s Syndrome I have at times struggled with anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, meltdowns, and psychosis.
I have found social interaction with my own peer group at times very difficult.
This has led to issues coping in a school environment, and resulted in frequent periods of homeschooling.
A positive channel for my mental health
I play the guitar and sing – both solo, and as part of various duos. Writing and performing music helps me to express myself and build my self esteem. It also gives me a platform to help others with mental health challenges.
Youth Ambassador For Dorset Mind
As an ambassador for Dorset Mind I have focused on raising awareness through speaking at various events. These have included regional and district Rotary Club Meetings (involving Westbourne Rotary and Poole Bay Rotary). I’ve also spoken at Rick Stein, Sandbanks, as part of the 2016 Mental Health Awareness Week, and the ‘Pint of Science’ evening organised by Bournemouth University.
I have organised two musical events, where I have brought the music community together to support Dorset Mind. ‘Sing for the Soul’ raised £550, and ‘Christmas on your Mind’ raised £560. I also wrote and recorded an original song, also called ‘Christmas on your Mind’. It was released in 2016 as the Dorset Mind Christmas Single to raise funds.
Once my GCSE’s are over I will dedicate more time to my role as a Dorset Mind Youth Ambassador. I’ll continue to help raise awareness, funds, and also support the development of their Youth Services.
Dorset Healthcare ‘Road to Wellness’ Awards
In April 2017, I won the ‘Inspiration’ category of the Dorset Healthcare ‘Road to Wellness’ Awards. Dorset Mind put me forward as a nominee for the contribution I have made to their Youth Services.
I run two Open Mic nights where local musicians (amateur or professional) are encouraged to perform in a relaxed atmosphere. The ethos of these evenings is very much about meeting new people and building confidence.
Social Media and Calvin’s Website:
Here is an extract from Calvin’s blog – What is Autism?