The Children and Young People’s Mental Health Coalition is delighted to announce the appointment of Amy Whitelock Gibbs as its new Chair.

Amy brings a significant wealth of knowledge and experience to the role, with a career spanning national charities, local government, and parliament. She has both lived and professional experience of mental health services, previously leading policy and campaigns at Mind for five years and holding political oversight for mental health prevention and support services in Tower Hamlets. Amy is currently Chief Executive of Tutors United, which provides free English and Maths tuition to children who need it the most, and was previously CEO at Birthrights, the human rights in childbirth charity.

Amy succeeds Sir Norman Lamb, who stepped down as Chair at the end of March 2023.

Charlotte Rainer, Coalition Lead said: ‘We are thrilled to welcome Amy as the Coalition’s new Chair. Amy’s knowledge, expertise and experience will ensure the Coalition continues to go from strength to strength, following on from Norman’s excellent leadership. With a new strategy in development and a growing membership base, we are excited to work with Amy to ensure we continue to work with, and support our members, and to jointly advocate for mentally healthier futures for babies, children and young people.”

On her new role, Amy said: “I’m honoured to be taking over as Chair of the Coalition from Sir Norman Lamb, who I’ve long admired. Now is a critical time for young people’s mental health. I see in my own children the toll that the pandemic has taken on their wellbeing and from my work as Chair of Tower Hamlets integrated care partnership, I know mental health problems among children and young people are at an all-time high, with services often failing to meet their needs. Like many of us, I fear this issue has slipped down the political priority list. I’m determined to work with the Coalition to provide a strong united voice on babies, children and young people’s mental health and drive concrete change, especially as we head into the general election period.”

Amy has previously held roles at Unicef UK and The Children’s Society, campaigning with young people to secure policy and practice change. Amy has also been a local councillor in Tower Hamlets, where she led in Cabinet on adults’ services, education and children’s social care, and is currently independent Chair of Tower Hamlets Together, the health and care partnership.