Name: Kirsten Hertog
Pursuit: The Kissy Project - Pro-Recovery Website for Eating Disorders
My name is Kirsten Hertog, I’m 16 years old and the creator of The Kissy Project.
I’ve suffered from an eating disorder (Anorexia Nervosa & Binge Eating Disorder) and in September 2011 I was admitted to hospital for 6 weeks and almost lost my life. Since then I decided to try and take control of this mental illness so I created a website to share my story and to give my voice a voice.‘The Kissy Project’ is a Pro recovery – website about my journey and to motivate other teenagers to believe in recovery.
In March 2012 I launched this website and it has received over 600,000 views and I have received thousands of messages.
I have inspired and motivated many teenagers from all over the world. A lot of girls have written to me and told me that I’ve saved their lives.
I’m extremely grateful to hear that as millions of girls have to live with this horrible illness every day.
When did you start?
I created The Kissy Project in March 2012
Career highlight or biggest achievement?
My biggest achievement is having more than half a million views on my website and motivating many teenagers to believe in recovery and aim for the stars as well.
What is your dream?
My biggest dream is to beat my mental illness, be healthy and travel around the world.
Who or what have inspired you?
Portia De Rossi. She is an Australian actor who has recovered from her eating disorder. Her book "Unbearable Light" has motivated me to believe in recovery.
Who's your hero?
Oprah Winfrey. I love her 2 quotes: Turn your wounds into wisdom & What you learn: Teach, What you receive: Give!
Any other special talents?
I make awesome cakes and I love dancing!
Anything chilled like Angus & Julia Stone
500 days of Summer
Favourite TV Show?
So You Think You Can Dance
Smoothies & Chocolate
How the grant will help you/how will you use the money?
Ever since choosing recovery, I write in a journal on a daily basis, challenges myself with weekly tasks and I am inspired by motivational quotes, videos & songs. Because many girls have asked me how I’ve motivated myself to say YES to recovery, I decided to create an app with all the steps I’ve done in the last 12 months. The Kissy Project App is an pro-recovery app for teenagers with an eating disorder, but I have also received many messages from teenagers with depression and they think the app helps them to stay positive as well. This app is not a “miracle medicine” but a tool to create a positive mindset, to believe in yourself and to discover your inner-strength. My app was sponsored for the iPhone but not for the Android. (already more than 7000 downloads) I’ve received over hundreds of messages of girls who want to download my app on their android phones. I'll use this grant to create the Kissy App for the android phone.
Last words: Quote or Motto you live by?
Everything happens for a reason! :)