6 March 2018
Young people sit at the heart of UK Youth through UK Youth Voice, a national steering board of young people who represent every region and nation in the UK. Last year one of the young people involved in this work tragically lost his brother to anxiety induced suicide, and he channelled all of the pain into something really productive. He set up his own organisation ‘The Delicate Mind’ aiming to eradicate the stigma attached to mental health in Black And Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities. He is aiming to reach as many young people as possible to help them with their journey and alert them to sources of support if they are facing difficulties. Find out more here.
Backing up the importance of this issue, Key Data on Young People 2017 highlighted the data that we have about the prevalence of mental health in young people from different ethnic backgrounds. The last big survey in 2004 showed that the rates of mental health problems are higher in some ethnic minority groups. Key Data also stresses how inequalities can be compounded by other factors. For example young carers are 1.5 times more likely to be from ethnic minority backgrounds and Young Carers are 5.9x more likely to report their health as not being good.
Last year, UK Youth Voice delivered a Manifesto to the Prime Minister, collating thousands of young people’s views and one of the calls to action was improvements on mental health services for young people. We know that action is needed to promote young people’s mental health and welcome the focus in this area. Part of this must be listening to what young people want and supporting youth led initiatives as part of a whole system, whole community approach to better mental health and suicide reduction for all young people.