Men­tal health talk of­fers us real hope

The Press and Journal (North-East) - - FEATURES -

SIR, – The Men­tal Health Foun­da­tion has re­vealed twothirds of us ex­pe­ri­ence a men­tal health prob­lem at some point in our life­time. It is in­spir­ing to note all the sto­ries be­ing shared this Men­tal Health Week that show a real will­ing­ness from so­ci­ety to chal­lenge the per­ceived taboos sur­round­ing men­tal ill health.

With a num­ber of fac­tors lead­ing to an in­crease in is­sues faced by young peo­ple, it is im­por­tant that intervention, open­ness and un­der­stand­ing be­gins at a young age.

We know young peo­ple see this as a mat­ter that af­fects them and their com­mu­ni­ties.

Our Youth and Philanthropy Ini­tia­tive (YPI) Scotland sees sec­ondary school stu­dents de­velop pre­sen­ta­tions to se­cure fund­ing for so­cial causes and char­i­ties of their choos­ing. This year to date, young peo­ple have se­cured £90,000 for char­i­ties sup­port­ing men­tal health is­sues. Of the more than 150 char­i­ta­ble awards al­ready made this aca­demic year through YPI, a fifth have been men­tal health re­lated.

This rep­re­sents a real hope for the fu­ture. Young peo­ple are recog­nis­ing men­tal health as an is­sue they are em­pow­ered to talk about and tackle – that is truly heart­en­ing.

Jonathan Christie, deputy UK di­rec­tor, The Wood Foun­da­tion,

Foun­tain­hall Road, Aberdeen

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