Reform helps youth with mental health
REFORM JUDAISM has appointed a welfare officer who will focus on young people’s mental health issues.
As part of the new role, funded entirely by a private donor, Mark Greenfield will increase training within the movement to better equip shuls and other groups to support their members.
“Mental health issues affect us all, especially in a tightknit community where everyone knows everyone else,” Mr Greenfield said. “There’s more pressure and stigma.
“We have always had welfare officers but this is the first time mental health has been targeted. That shows the importance we place on the issue.”
Mr Greenfield has joined Reform from JW3, where he was head of community programming. He was previously a family support worker in Hackney. He wants to work with other religious movements on mental health matters. Laura Janner-Klausner, Reform’s senior rabbi, said young Jews needed help to access support and treatment.
“There is a lot of anxiety and pressure around exams — and from parents to be successful. Body image and body shaming is also an issue and so are questions of sexuality and gender.”