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Charlotte Siya

Charlotte Siya

CEO
Valor Mental Health Foundation
Francistown

Biography

Charlotte K. Siya Charlotte Siya was born in Francistown Botswana, the first child of a single mother. She was raised in Francistown where she attended primary school through to senior secondary school in public schools. After high school she briefly studied in China. In 2013 she fell pregnant and stayed home to have her baby. Charlotte then decided to change career paths by enrolling in Botho University to study Accounts and be close to her infant daughter. In 2014 her long-term relationship with the father of her daughter came to an abrupt end which triggered psychological breakdown leading to her diagnosis with Bipolar I. It is then that her path in Mental Health awareness and advocacy began. Charlotte comes from a family of open minded cultural people but they had misconceptions about mental illness like most people do. So, when she was diagnosed with Bipolar, they struggled to understand and accept the situation. This on its own put a strain on the family and Charlotte. With time and patience, Charlotte educated them as she learned about her condition and the family rallied around her. Though she was accepted for her condition at home, she became acutely aware of the myriad of misconceptions the community has about mental illnesses during interactions with other people living with similar conditions. So, she set out to educate herself and those around her about mental health for the betterment of society. In May 2017, Charlotte decided to start an NGO with the mission to educate the public, help the mentally ill community and raise awareness on Mental Health; a significant but egregiously overlooked matter affecting us all. May 30th 2017 is when Charlotte chaired the first meeting of Valor Mental Health Foundation, a date chosen intentionally to coincide with her birthday. Since then she has been joined by other young people passionate about volunteering and helping others in the pursuit of a better society.

Research Interest

Mental Health awareness