Youth Mental Health
Many people I talk to tell me they have felt disconnected and anxious during the pandemic and young people are no different.
The impact can be significant with the OECD reporting mental health issues in those aged 15-24 have doubled and young people much more likely to experience anxiety and depression than adults. UNICEF says nearly half of Australian students are behind in school and a Headspace survey reported more than three quarters of young people say the pandemic has impacted on their education, work, and finances.
These statistics are grim so it is important we support young people. Conversations while being active or engaging in something creative can help – a walk & talk, a drive & debrief or connecting through sharing music, sport, cooking, gaming or a zoom chat. Creativity can help > HERE.
The Advocate for Children and Young People is creating an ultimate NSW young person’s Spotify playlist, inviting young people to send up to three of their favourite songs to sing, exercise, or relax to, and win prizes by Friday 15 October > HERE.
Bite Back offers engaging online activities and programs to improve wellbeing and resilience including a mental fitness challenge > HERE. eHeadspace is a free, secure space where a young person or their family can web chat, email or speak on the phone with qualified youth mental health professionals > HERE. QLife provides anonymous and free LGBTI peer support and referral phone 1800 184 527 or > HERE.
Reach Out provides online information, support and resources about mental health issues young people aged 25 and below > HERE. Kids Helpline is a free, confidential 24/7 online and phone counselling service for young people aged 5 to 25, phone 1800 55 1800 or > HERE. For digital mental health resources go to Head to Health > HERE.
I will follow up with the minister for action to support young people at school as part of COVID recovery plans.