Lesley Williams-Blackwell, MD, a board certified family medicine physician and certified eating disorder specialist, is an advocate for diversity and inclusivity in healthcare. After years of working in the mental health field, she noted that many of the issues she was seeing in her adult and adolescent patients, were linked to negative messages they internalized since early childhood regarding their appearance. She discovered that it was difficult to combat these ingrained messages. She also observed her own young daughter starting to struggle with body image issues and feeling self-conscious about her size. Dr. Williams-Blackwell then decided to switch gears and focus her energy from eating disorder and mental health treatment to prevention. She determined that the best way to address these concerns was to become an advocate for positive body image and size diversity in young children. Her hope is that this approach will ultimately improve the physical and mental well-being of children as well as adults.
Free to Be Me is designed to help build the self-confidence of elementary school-aged children. The book’s message promotes mental health and wellness as well as diversity and inclusivity. The goal of the book is to empower ALL children to live happy, healthy lives and feel free to be themselves.
A portion of all book sale proceeds will be used to support non-profit organizations dedicated to improving the health of children.