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The Alternative Alphabet

GEMS Education has teamed up with UAE-based Thrive Wellbeing Centre to create a free mental health tool called The Alternative Alphabet, which aims to empower young people with an understanding of the language around mental health.

The fun, engaging tool facilitates a deeper understanding of this important area and provides adolescents with essential related skills, allowing them to better identify, define, and discuss the potential challenges they may face.

Did you know that 73% of students in the UAE feel that more support is needed in the area of mental health? GEMS Education conducted a survey with 4,500 students aged 11-18 years, and the results showed that even though young people today are aware of mental health issues, seven out of ten of them don’t feel comfortable discussing their own challenges with friends or classmates.

That’s where The Alternative Alphabet comes in. It’s a family-friendly card game that makes learning about mental health fun and engaging. The game features 26 original characters, each representing a different aspect of mental wellbeing, from kindness and tolerance to self-compassion and insecurity.

The Alternative Alphabet Workshop

Alternative Alphabet - Complete

The Alternative Alphabet is designed to encourage open conversations about mental health and create a supportive environment for everyone involved. Just like we associate letters with objects when we’re little (A for Apple, C for Cat), The Alternative Alphabet helps young people associate letters with emotions and concepts like anxiety and mindfulness.

It’s a simple and interactive way to introduce the language of mental health, with the power to destigmatise this all-important subject and positively impact thousands of young people as they navigate the transformative phase of their lives.

Join us in this exciting journey to support mental resilience and wellbeing for young people everywhere!

Letter by Letter

The Alternative Alphabet helps young people associate letters with emotions and concepts like anxiety and mindfulness.

  • A
    is for Anxiety
  • B
    is for Belonging
  • C
    is for Courage
  • D
    is for Different
  • E
    is for Expectations
  • F
    is for Friends
  • G
    is for Gratitude
  • H
    is for Hopelessness
  • I
    is for Insecurity
  • J
    is for Joy
  • K
    is for Kindness
  • L
    is for Loneliness
  • M
    is for Mindfulness
  • N
    is for Negativity
  • O
    is for Openness
  • P
    is for Positivity
  • Q
    is for Questioning
  • R
    is for Rejection
  • S
    is for Self-Compassion
  • T
    is for Tolerance
  • U
    is for Understanding
  • V
    is for Vulnerability
  • W
    is for Wellbeing
  • X
    is for Xenophobia
  • Y
    is for You
  • Z
    is for ZZZZ (Sleep)

Mental Health Awareness

The Alternative Alphabet follows the successful release of ‘The Mock Exam’, a thought-provoking film featuring real students, aimed at raising awareness about the significance of open conversations around mental health. Watch the film below.

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