Supporting the mental health of the youngest members of our community
On World Mental Health Day, we explore how we’re working with Kids Helpline to support the mental health and wellbeing of the youngest members of our community, and how you can get involved or find support.
The 10th of October is World Mental Health Day, and with as many as one in four Australian’s impacted by mental health issues, no part of our community is left untouched.
Even the youngest among us can experience issues with their mental wellbeing, with Kids Helpline suggesting that the number of children seeking help is growing year on year.
In fact, according to a report issued in 2018, Kids Helpline has seen the number of children aged between 10 and 14 contacting them in 2017 more than doubling, to seek help for a whole range of things including family relationships, emotional wellbeing, counselling and issues with dating and partners.
Getting support for mental health issues early is important, and that’s one of the reasons why we’ve partnered with Kids Helpline to sponsor the Kids Helpline @ School Wellbeing program. The program is a free counsellor-led session, delivered in the classroom to primary school students around the country.
“In the first 12 months of the program, we’ve been really pleased to reach more than 15,000 students across Australia, with about 200 schools participating so far,” shared Kate Driessen, Bupa Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability Manager.
“Teachers are telling us that their students are far more likely to exhibit better choices and decision making in the future as a result of the program”.
The program is designed to increase resilience and encourage help seeking by children, using early intervention to help set children up with the tools they need to look after their emotional wellbeing into the future.
“Importantly it has allowed us to increase the number of students we can have conversations with, to promote help seeking, to promote early intervention, to promote the idea that it’s ok to reach out for help if you need it and that’s a great thing in our book” said Tony FitzGerald, Virtual Services Manager Kids Helpline.
Importantly it has allowed us to increase the number of students we can have conversations with, to promote help seeking, to promote early intervention, to promote the idea that it’s ok to reach out for help if you need it and that’s a great thing in our book
To find out more about the school program, or to get your school involved, you can visit Kids Helpline.
As a parent, if you need some guidance or are worried about the mental health of your children, we also offer the Bupa Mental Health Navigation Service to our Health Insurance members. The service is available 24/7, nationwide, to all Bupa members who have an active Hospital product that covers themselves and their children. It’s designed to help identify your child’s needs, and then help guide you to the next best step to take.
To find out more about this service, please visit our Mental Health Navigation Service information page.
And of course, if you have an emergency need for support, you can contact:
- Lifeline: 13 11 14, or
- Kids Helpline: 1800 55 1800