Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg announced the winners of the country’s mental health heroes on the 5th of February. The nine regional winners were chosen by an expert panel looking for individuals who were changing lives through actions such as helping to break the stigma around mental health, supporting people with mental health problems to stay in or return to work, and inspiring others in addressing or overcoming mental health problems.
As well as being a counsellor here at the Leicester Counselling Centre, Myira has led work nationally and internationally to dispel the stigma attached to mental health conditions within Muslim and South Asian communities.
She founded the Muslim Counsellor and Psychotherapist Network in April 2013 which seeks to promote counselling as a career path for those from Muslim communities, and has attended multiple national conferences and speaking engagements.
On winning the Mental Health Hero Award, Myira said:
“I am really honoured and humbled to be receiving [this award]... I am driven by my passion to create easier and wider access to counselling services for our communities and to provide effective, safe and supportive counselling to all clients. I also believe in my social responsibility to break down barriers and reduce the stigma around mental health issues. Mental health awareness, talking therapies and counselling/mental health services need to be recognised and fully supported and funded to ensure that everyone can get access to services and the help they need, when they need it.”
Myira has also been shortlisted for the Asian Women of Achievement Awards in the Social and Humanitarian category. The awards were founded by Pinky Lilani, who received an OBE in 2007 for her work to celebrate women’s achievements.
At the Leicester Counselling Centre, we are passionate about making counselling affordable and inclusive. We are extremely proud of the work Myira has been doing locally, nationally and internationally to support the cause of mental health awareness.
The Asian Women of Achievement Awards will be held in London on the 19th May and we wish Myira all the best of luck!