A BIG-hearted teenager who has been helping others open up about their mental health is hoping her legacy will remain long after she leaves school.

Last year Largs Academy pupil Corrie Shepherd set up a groundbreaking support network 'Clearer Minds' to improve young people's mental health after she watched pupils struggle to cope with the death of a fellow pupil.

Having successfully obtained funding to run the project for 18 months, Corrie is now seeking ways to ensure it can continue after she leaves in the summer.

Pupils across the school have already benefitted from tailored assemblies, 'stressed into action' workshops and 1-2-1 coaching, as well as special seminars for teachers and parents.

The 17-year-old who was also named North Ayrshire's Young Citizen of the Year, says she hope the community will continue to back the venture so it help future generations.

Corrie said: "The initial 18 month period will be completed in June and we are in the process of looking for funding for the following year. I hope the people of Largs will support us and allow this valuable programme to continue.

"Clearer Minds has been able to support 1,400 pupils, staff and parents to promote positive mental health and well-being throughout the school.

"I feel the school and the wider community has benefited and it is more accepted now for people to talk openly about mental health.

"The school has been so supportive and has created a safe place for pupils to sit at lunch time and talk to someone if they feel the need. We have our promotional logo on badges, wristbands, lanyards and a custom made banner to keep Clearer Minds visual and relevant.

"I think that pupils are now more comfortable discussing their mental health and have a better awareness of who they can turn to for help in the school.

"There is a greater sense of community and confidence that it is fine for people to speak up and look out for each other.

"I finish school in May but I will remain very proud of the Clearer Minds Project and everything it has achieved so far.

"I would like to be able look back in 20 years time and see that it is still being delivered in Largs Academy. Perhaps it can be expanded to take in all North Ayrshire schools, that would be amazing."

Whilst Corrie hopes the project will continue long after she leaves, she also plans to further develop her own understanding of mental health issues in the next chapter of her life.

She added: "I have applied for five psychology degree courses at universities and I am patiently awaiting their response.

"I hope to continue to learn how the mind the works and in longer term how I can help others."