Let’s Break the Shame was founded early 2019 by Mae Zaal. Throughout her teenage and young adolescent years, she experienced the weight of the mental health stigma herself. She noticed that people are ashamed to talk about their mental well-being, because when they open up, they’re often told to stop complaining.
Mental topics should be taken seriously at all times. With Let’s Break the Shame we initially wanted to start an online campaign in which people felt comfortable and safe sharing their mental health journey. It turned out to be a big success and after meeting up with many participants, it became clear that there was a need for more.
Roughly half a year later, we organized our first event in Amsterdam with the theme Depression & Anxiety. The months before that were taken up by the organization and preparations of the event, which turned out to be a success. This month marks the start of more events and also more projects.
The last few months of 2019 and the first quarter of 2020 were extremely busy and we realized we wanted to be seen as a social organisation. In April 2020, we officially moved from a sole proprietorship to a foundation.
We started out with 5 volunteers and 1 team member. Not only did we continue to organize events, we also started providing coaching sessions, workshops, video creation and more. In the last few months, we started with the creation of company and education programs. By the end of 2020, we had expanded to 12 volunteers, 3 board members, 1 intern and 1 team member.
More and more people wanted to join LBTS and very quickly we expanded to 35 volunteers. With a team of 5, the board and a couple of strategists, we work on our projects. In 2021, we have been invited to multiple conferences such as Netherlands creates Impact & AEGEE.
We have been hosting workshops for CODAM Coding College and students of the University of Amsterdam. We hosted more than 15 events and launched incredible campaigns.
As of November 2021, Mae does not run LBTS on her own anymore. To further grow and reach the goals, she partnered up with Iris de With. Both have taken on the role as Co-Presidents.
Make a Change!
Sign-up to our monthly mental health newsletter and receive tips, trick and great deals to make a change...