May is Mental Health Awareness Month in the United States. Each year millions face the reality of living with a mental illness. This month, Key Club joins other in raising awareness about mental health and providing support to people living with this condition.
Below are some facts and resources concerning mental health.
Did you know?
- 1 in 6 , or 17% of U.S. youth aged 6-17 experience a mental health disorder each year.
- 50% of all lifetime mental illness begins by age 14 and 75% begins by age 24.
- The average delay between symptoms onset and treatment is 11 years.
- Only 51% of youth (6-17) with a mental health condition get treatment in a given year.
- Suicide is the second leading cause of death for people ages 10-34.
- 70% of youth in the juvenile justice system have a diagnosed mental illness.
- Depression and anxiety disorders cost the global economy $1 trillion in lost productivity each year.
- Depression is a leading cause of disability worldwide.
If you or someone you know suffers from a mental health condition or just needs someone to listen, many great resources are available at your fingertips:
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
- Crisis Text Line: Text HOME to 741-741 for 24/7 support via text.
- To Write Love on Her Arms
- Erika’s Lighthouse
- World Health Organization
- Kiwanis/Key Club/CKI Mental Health Q & A with Anthem’s Chair of Psychiatry (May 2020)
- Shine a Light on Depression
- Stories Of Courage, Culture And Community
- Self-care Tips By Key Club International Trustees River Pease and Jordan Reichhardt
- Parents, guardians, grandparents, teachers, school counselors: A trusted adult is a great resource.
- Remember, if you or someone you know is in an immediate crisis or you have harmed yourself in any way, taken any pills or harmful substances or do not feel safe, call 911 immediately. A life is more precious than you can imagine in that moment.
Want to spread awareness at your school?
Try one or more of these great projects to get your club involved:
- Key the Teacher: Write compliments or positive thoughts on sticky notes; mention that they are from the Key Club. Post them on teachers’ doors.
- Random Acts of Kindness: Leave positive messages in lockers, write thank-you notes or say hello to a new person.
- Hope Garden: Plant a garden of yellow tulips at your school or in your community. Check out theyellowtulipproject.org/ to learn more about a Hope Garden that spreads positive messages and mental health awareness.
- Hope Board: Pin the question “What are you hopeful for?” on a bulletin board. Place sticky notes and pens nearby and ask students to post their answers.
- Move every day to maintain a positive outlook. Try moving with a Physical Education teacher offering online classes at The BodyCoach TV.
- Organize an online book club. Read a book and connect online for discussion. Try Project Happiness Circles with book recommendations and discussion questions.
- Rewire your brain for happiness. Participate in the 21 Day Happiness Challenge.
- Practice these tips for staying mentally healthy
- Sign-up for Yale’s popular Happiness class currently available online for free.