Working with young people is an area that is close to our hearts at Mindspace. This year, on September 19th, we are celebrating Youth Mental Health Day.
Did you know that today, one in six 7–16-year-olds have a diagnosable mental health disorder? This is a rise from one in ten in 2004 and one in nine in 2012. Common mental health issues, such as depression and anxiety, are also increasing amongst 16–24-year-olds. A staggering 19% of 16-24-year olds reported to have experienced mental health issues in 2014, compared to 15% in 1993.
Encouraging discussion of mental health in young people
Founded in 2020 by the charity stem4, Youth Mental Health Day aims to inspire hope and positivity for young people. The campaign encourages understanding and discussion of youth mental health. And by raising awareness and highlighting the importance of early intervention amongst teenagers, it helps tackle the stigma attached to the mental health of young people.
The theme of this year’s Youth Mental Health Day is #BeBrave. #BeBrave can mean something different to everyone. For you, it might mean having the courage to fail by doing something new, no matter what the outcome. Or building the confidence to face difficult situations. Perhaps it means having the confidence to be yourself, rather than the person other people want you to be.
How can you get involved?
There are many ways to get involved. For example, you could raise awareness by posting about being brave on social media. Or you could write to your local MP to explain why you care about mental health and ask them to take action. You can download a handy letter template to write to your local MP and find more ideas about how to get involved on the stem4 website.
Resources for young people
Stem4 have a number of resources on their website, including a guide for young people to help when dealing with daily anxieties and difficulties, and a guide for schools and colleges.
For some young people, to #BeBrave means having the courage to reach out and seek support when they need it. Our counselling service for young people aged 11-17 provides a confidential and safe space for young people to share their worries, difficulties and concerns with a trusted professional.