Posted: Monday 22nd January 2018
A new campaign is being launched to encourage young people in Hertfordshire to ‘Just Talk’ about their mental health.
Check out our campaign launch video above!
With one in 10 children aged 5 to 16 having a significant mental health problem, helping young people to open up and get support is vital.
Richard Roberts, Hertfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health, explained: “Many young people fear judgement and embarrassment if they talk about mental health problems, but the fact is we all have mental health, like we have physical health.
"Through our ‘Just Talk’ campaign, we want young people, especially boys and young men, to know that it’s OK to not be OK and that sharing a problem with someone they trust is the first step to feeling better.”
Health, council and community and voluntary organisations from across Hertfordshire are working together to promote Just Talk and schools are holding Just Talk assemblies and lessons to normalise conversations about mental health.
“Young people have advised on the direction of the campaign from the start, helping to choose the Just Talk name and design the logo,” said Maria Nastri, child and adolescent mental health services transformation manager at Hertfordshire’s two NHS clinical commissioning groups. “We hope everyone will get involved and spread the word about Just Talk because there is support out there and it can really help.”
National mental health campaigners Jonny Benjamin and Neil Laybourn, known as the Strangers on the Bridge after Neil stopped and talked to Jonny when he was on the brink of taking his own life, were among the first to have backed Just Talk, as well as two Arsenal under-23 players and Watford FC squad members.
“The first time that I talked was actually to Neil really, when I was on a bridge and I wasn’t well and I was suicidal so that was the first time that I opened up,” said Jonny. “I would encourage anyone that’s struggling to Just Talk and I really get behind this because talking has been the best thing that I’ve ever done, it’s been the most important thing that I’ve ever done and I wish that I’d talked earlier.”
In Hertfordshire, 10 to 25 year olds can log on for free online support and counselling at www.kooth.com and can find all kinds of advice and information at www.healthyyoungmindsinherts.org.uk
Please back the #JustTalk campaign by sharing messages using #JustTalk and posting short video messages online.
To watch more videos about the campaign, including Premier League footballers from Watford FC, two young Arsenal players, journalists, comedians and mental health campaigners, teenagers and youth workers, visit: www.healthyyoungmindsinherts.org.uk/justtalk