we are SafeSpace...
...a youth-led, mental health-focused organization that empowers young people to engage openly with their local schools and communities. We create and implement initiatives to change the conversation around mental health by educating and encouraging our peers to speak up, support others, and seek help when needed.
Creator, Editorial team
Anouschka is a senior at The Nueva School in San Mateo passionate about mental health advocacy, storytelling, and the visual arts. At SafeSpace Stories, she’s the creator / manager, co-host of the podcast, website designer, and a writer and editor of the storytelling blog. In her free time, you can find her playing with her two cats, painting, watching Marvel movies, or getting lost in a book.
Bela is a junior at Menlo Atherton High School who aims to eliminate the stigma around mental health through projects such as SafeSpace Stories. At SafeSpace Stories she’s the co-host of the podcast. Outside of SafeSpace, Bela enjoys being in nature and traveling while spending time with friends and family. Through sharing her own mental health journey, she hopes to inspire others to seek help.
Youth Engagement Specialist
Aris is the Youth Engagement Specialist at SafeSpace and she is very passionate about youth voice and ensuring that they are at the forefront of the mental health work in our communities. Outside of SafeSpace, she is an avid Disney fan, loves to spend time with her family and friends, and has been a dancer since the age of 3.
Annie is the Managing Director of SafeSpace. She has over a decade of working in the mental health field and feels passionate about working with youth and ensuring that SafeSpace continues to be youth-driven. She is a contributing editor to SafeSpace Stories and welcomes all lived experiences that have been impacted by mental health to shine on this platform. You can connect with her instantly if you share the love for cooking, country music, and dogs!
Susan Gordon Bird
My siblings and I have suffered from different forms of anxiety, and my parents never hesitated to get us the help we needed or talk to us about it. We were the lucky ones. As a mother, I witness so many youth suffering silently, not knowing who to talk to and where to get help. Unfortunately, many of my daughter’s peers and my peers growing up never received treatment which led to severe implications and sometimes even suicide. I wanted to do something that would help young people become mentally healthy adults — hence SafeSpace was created.
Liesl is a mother of 4 and experienced anxiety and depression as a 15-year-old. She is determined to help other young adults develop tools and coping mechanisms to manage their own difficulties. She wanted to create a place where teens could work together to help their peers deal with the problems they face. Breaking the stigma starts one conversation at a time — but is much more fun to do together!