Educating the youth on mental health is critical

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Issues affecting the youth are being “downplayed” according to Clarevue Psychiatric Hospital (C.P.H.) Nurse Cavell Morris-Willis, who spoke with OBSERVER media after an educational session and tour of the hospital with about 20 first formers of the Jennings Secondary School yesterday.
The C.P.H. is observing Mental Health Week under the theme “Young People in Mental Health, in a Changing World” and nurse Morris-Willis said, sensitising the youth on the issue of mental health is critical.
“Because some of the topics that the theme covers; suicide, bullying, trauma and gender identity, we decided to focus on high school students, because these are issues that are affecting our youth and they are being downplayed in a lot of instances because youth are not given a voice to express themselves,” she said.
The nurse commented that all of the topics were interrelated because “a person who is having problems with sexual identity or who is experiencing depression or a person who has been bullied often times it leads to suicide.”
She described Wednesday’s event as a way to give “highlight to mental health issues and a way to give highlight to issues that are affecting youth and how they can get help” because too often people are unaware that help is available.
“So, this is a way for them [youth] to talk about what they are going through and to get help before it leads to suicide,” she concluded.
Meanwhile teacher, Carlecia Samuel, who accompanied the first-formers, described the visit as an “amazing” educational opportunity. “I realise that mental health is just as important as physical health. So, we are grateful to have been here, so that the children can learn more about mental [health].”
From 9 a.m., today, the public is invited to the patients’ sports and activities day at the Psychiatric Hospital.
Mental Health Week will climax on October 13 with a 20/20 cricket match at the Police Recreation Grounds from 9 a.m.

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