Founders Story

Jodie McNab was 12 when she began having non-epileptic seizures, she was admitted to hospital as an in-patient and it was established she had been self-harming as a consequence of trauma. She was interviewed by Police and Social Work who established she had been abused by someone she knew. Tracy, her mother, was devastated. As Jodie grew from a teenager to an adult, her mental health deteriorated and Tracy became her 24-hour carer, constantly worried about her self-harming and where she could go for help in a crisis. Jodie was regularly encountering the Police, not through criminal behaviour, rather to protect her from harm because there was nowhere else to go. Tracy learned there were so many good people in the public services but that they, the young people and their parents needed help. To contribute, Tracy started a peer support group for families coping with children who self-harm.

In May 2013, when Jodie was 22, Tracy received the devastating news that Jodie had completed suicide. She determined she had to do something to prevent others suffering as she was. She started looking for a model that could provide immediate help for people in mental health crisis. She looked for, and found, some wonderful inspirational people; Joan Freeman who founded Pieta House in Ireland and Anne Rowan from Glasgow who founded Chris’s House there. Tracy loved the model but didn’t want to call the Perth version ‘Jodie’s house’, she wanted a place for anyone and everybody. She eventually struck upon the Lighthouse, a beacon in the darkness, in green and yellow, the colours that symbolise mental health.

Tracy started fundraising and raised £40,000 to start the project. in December 2015, with the help of friends, family and colleagues she launched the Lighthouse, she is proud to have remained involved until 2020, when, confident it was sustainable and meeting her vision, she decided to step down. Tracy remains committed to the Lighthouse and its objectives, she is delighted to see how important it has become to so many people and families who are suffering as she and Jodie did.  It epitomises the McNab family motto that is so dear to Tracy’s heart Timor Omnis Abesto ‘Let fear be far from all’

The Lighthouse for Perth is a registered charity in Scotland SC046186.

You can donate to our JustGiving page here.